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Quantrill  and  the  Border  Wars 


WILLIAM  CLARKE  QUANTRILL 
THE  GUERRILLA  CHIEF 


v 
<• 

Quantrill  and  the  Border  Wars 


By 

William  Elsey  Connelley 

Author  of  "Doniphan's  Expedition.  Mexican  War,"   "Memoirs  of  John 
Jame*  Infalls."  "Wyandot  Folk-Lore,"  "The  Heckewelder  Narra- 
tive," "The  Provisional  Government  of  Nebraska  Territory,"  etc. 


CEDAR  RAPIDS,  IOWA 

THE  TORCH  PRESS,  PUBLISHERS 

1910 


COPYRIGHT  1909 

WILLIAM  ELSEY  CONNELLEY 
ALL  RIGHTS  RESERVED 


THE  TORCH   PRESS 

CEDAR    RAPIDS 

IOWA 


PREFACE 

THE  border  wars  must  be  taken  to  constitute  a  phase  of 
that  critical  period  in  American  history  when  two  an- 
tagonistic fundamentals  of  government  contended  for 
supremacy.  The  devotion  of  adherents  to  respective  principles 
was  fanatical  and  fierce,  and  unusual  animosities  were  en- 
gendered. 

By  stormy  conventions  the  two  ideas  of  the  destiny  of  our 
common  country  were  reconciled  in  our  growth  to  the  Mississippi. 
Newly  bound  and  hedged  about,  they  were  flung  upon  the  soil 
of  Missouri.  But  the  compromise  of  a  principle  is  a  crime,  and 
the  feeble  barriers  set  by  time-serving  statesmen  became  tense 
and  strained.  The  advance-guard  of  a  higher  national  life  burst 
them  asunder  and  emerged  upon  the  Great  Plains.  There  the 
contest  to  maintain  itself  became  a  grapple  for  the  existence  of 
the  government,  and  ended  in  civil  war. 

The  story  of  the  border  is  the  history  of  preliminary  forays 
and  the  shock  of  army  upon  army  in  the  national  contest.  It 
covers  ten  years.  In  wealth  of  romantic  incidents,  stirring  ad- 
ventures, hair-breadth  escapes,  sanguinary  ambuscades,  deadly 
encounters,  individual  vengeance,  relentless  desolation  of  towns 
and  communities,  and  bloody  murder,  no  other  part  of  America 
can  compare  with  it.  Some  future  Scott  will  make  himself  im- 
mortal by  telling  this  wonderful  story. 

This  is  the  first  effort,  it  is  believed,  to  make  any  serious 
study  of  the  conditions  prevailing  on  the  border.  The  state  of 
society  about  Lawrence  as  shown  in  the  year  1860  may  be  ac- 
cepted as  representative  of  the  general  conditions  found  in' 
Kansas  up  to  the  Civil  War,  and  no  attempt  to  describe  them 
has  been  found.  The  state  of  disorder  in  Missouri  was  the  re- 
sult in  some  degree  of  the  reaction  upon  itself  of  its  course  in 
Kansas.  The  time  has  not  yet  come  when  a  dispassionate  study 
of  the  conditions  which  existed  in  Missouri  will  be  acceptable 


6      QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

to  all  the  people  of  that  great  commonwealth.  But  the  position 
that  the  Missourian  suffered  most  from  his  brother  Missourian 
is  founded  on  facts  and  will  be  sustained  by  future  writers. 

Nothing  has  been  written  in  a  sensational  way.  The  simple 
statement  of  what  occurred  is  sensational  enough,  and  the  old 
idea  that  truth  is  stranger  than  fiction  is  demonstrated. 

Except  the  men  at  the  heads  of  the  respective  govern- 
ments, and  some  of  the  leading  generals,  Quantrill  is  the  most 
widely-known  man  connected  with  the  Civil  War.  His  place  in 
the  public  estimation  of  the  South  was  based  upon  a  misappre- 
hension of  his  life  and  motives.  He  voluntarily  imposed  himself 
on  the  South.  He  told  little  of  his  prior  life,  and  that  which  he 
did  tell  was  wholly  untrue.  It  is  due  to  the  South  that  his  life 
be  revealed  as  it  actually  was.  That  done,  his  character  and  his 
motives  stand  clearly  outlined.  Heretofore  there  has  been  noth- 
ing on  which  to  base  a  reason  for  many  incidents  in  the  warfare 
of  the  border. 

It  is  one  of  the  strange  decrees  of  fate  that  the  normal  man 
is  rarely  mentioned  in  history  or  literature.  The  citizen  who 
labors  diligently  to  support  his  family,  to  build  up  his  city,  to 
sustain  his  state,  gets  little  or  no  notice  in  the  annals  of  his  time. 
It  is  the  abnormal  man,  the  man  in  desperate  extremity,  who  is 
portrayed  for  the  amusement  or  instruction  of  mankind. 


This  work  could  never  have  been  written  fully  but  for  the 
preliminary  labors  of  the  late  W.  W.  Scott,  editor  of  the  Iron 
Valley  Reporter,  Canal  Dover,  Ohio.  He  grew  up  with  Quan- 
trill, and  it  was  his  desire  to  write  an  account  of  the  life  of  the 
noted  guerrilla.  He  secured  from  Mrs.  Quantrill  the  letters  writ- 
ten her  by  her  son.  He  traveled  extensively  to  secure  facts.  He 
located  the  grave  and  removed  the  body.  Mrs.  Quantrill  stipu- 
lated that  the  story  of  her  son  should  not  be  written  in  her  life- 
time. But  she  outlived  Mr.  Scott,  and  he  never  got  beyond  the 
point  of  gathering  material.  After  his  death  the  author  bought 
his  papers. 

Many  of  the  most  stirring  events  of  the  border  wars  do  not 
properly  fall  within  the  scope  of  this  work.  It  is  the  intention  of 
the  author  to  publish  another  book  in  which  will  appear  adequate 


PREFACE  7 

accounts  of  the  transactions  and  doings  in  the  Border  Wars  of 
Atchison,  Lane,  Brown,  Robinson,  Thayer,  Shelby,  Jennison, 
Hoyt,  Bill  Anderson,  Clements,  the  Youngers,  the  James  boys, 
George  Todd,  Senator  Steven  B.  Elkins,  Captain  William  H. 
Gregg,  and  the  operations  generally  of  Free-State  pioneers,  bor- 
der-ruffians, Red  Legs,  Guerrillas,  and  Jayhawkers  in  the  dis- 
orders on  the  border. 


The  author  realizes  that  there  may  be  some  objection  to 
the  repetition  of  the  statement  in  the  notes  that  documents  cited 
as  authority  may  be  found  in  his  Collection.  But  long  and  per- 
sistent effort  failed  to  devise  a  better  plan. 


This  is  not  designed  to  be  a  ''Life"  of  Quantrill,  but  an 
account  of  those  incidents  of  the  Border  Wars  in  which  he  and 
his  men  were  the  leading  characters.  All  that  could  be  learned 
of  the  famous  outlaw  and  his  family  has  been  set  down.  It 
was  necessary  that  this  work  should  be  written.  Little  of 
the  story  has  ever  been  told.  There  has  been  no  definite  in- 
formation. All  has  been  myth,  doubt,  assertion,  beautiful  gen- 
eralization, conjecture.  In  a  general  way  it  has  been  known  that 
banditti  infested  the  border,  that  ruthless  hands  were  red  with 
blood,  that  many  a  night  flared  red  with  burning  homes  and 
sacked  towns.  But  of  the  family  and  parentage  of  Quantrill, 
his  life  in  Illinois,  Indiana,  Kansas  —  of  his  trip  to  Utah  and 
Pike's  Peak,  his  school,  his  life  at  Lawrence,  and  the  Morgan 
Walker  raid — of  the  organization  of  his  band  of  guerrillas,  its 
operations  in  Missouri,  Kansas,  Texas,  and  what  is  now  Okla- 
homa, of  his  expulsion  therefrom  and  the  disintegration  thereof 
—  of  his  life  with  Kate  Clarke,  his  expedition  to  Kentucky  and 
his  operations  there  —  of  his  death,  burial,  and  exhumation  — 
of  these  things  no  man  has  been  able  to  speak  with  confidence, 
for  knowledge  of  them  was  not  at  hand.  And  the  importance  of 
this  information  is  realized  when  we  remember  that  it  embraces 
much  of  the  history  of  four  states  in  the  Civil  War  and  portrays 
the  bloodiest  man  known  to  the  annals  of  America. 


There  is  no  good  portrait  of  Quantrill.    He  had  a  tin-type 


8      QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

made  at  the  beginning  of  the  war.  It  was  lost  in  the  yard  of  one 
Fields,  in  Jackson  county,  who  found  it  and  preserved  it  until 
Thomson  Quantrill  came  to  Missouri.  He  demanded  the  pic- 
ture and  it  was  given  to  him,  but  it  was  first  photographed.  The 
photographs  made  from  this  tin-type,  which  had  lain  in  the 
ground  some  time,  are  all  the  portraits  known  of  Quantrill. 
Some  one  supposed  he  wore  a  mustache,  and  with  a  brush  sup- 
plied one.  E.  P.  DeHart  had  the  portrait  painted  in  Confed- 
erate uniform  in  company  with  a  character  known  as  "Indian 
Jim,"  no  copy  of  which  has  been  found.  A.  M.  Winner,  Kansas 
City,  Mo.,  had  it  painted  in  Confederate  uniform,  rank  of 
Colonel,  prints  of  which  are  common. 

WILLIAM  E.  CONNELLEY 
816  Lincoln  Street 
Topeka,  Kansas 
July  3,  1909 


MAPS  AND  ILLUSTRATIONS 

PORTRAIT  OF  QUANTRILL frontispiece 

ANDERSON,   BILL 316 

BAKER,  H.  W 351 

BALL,  CHARLES 140 

BONES  OF  QUANTRILL 's  EIGHT  ARM 35 

CITY  HOTEL,  LAWRENCE,  ("Where  the  prisoners  were  taken)  344 

CLARKE,  HENRY  S '.         .         .  358 

CLEMENTS,  ARCH .        .  269 

COLLAMORE,  GEORGE  W.         .        .        .        .      -:.        .  352 

COLT,  COLONEL  SAMUEL       .        .        .        .       V  •     .        .  320 

CRANE,  JOHN  L .•<;      •  354 

ELDRIDGE,  COLONEL  S.  W 341 

FACSIMILE  OF  QUANTRILL 's  LAST  LETTER      .        .        .  126 

FISHER,  KEY.  H.  D.      ..        ...        .        .        .  362 

GREGG,  CAPTAIN  WILLIAM  H 341 

GRISWOLD,  DR.  J.  F.       .        .        .        .        .        .        .  350 

GROVENOR,  GURDON 362 

HARRIS,  NANNIE 299 

HAYS,  COLONEL  UPTON 261 

HOCKENSMITH,  CLARK 473 

HOUSE  IN  WHICH  QUANTRILL  WAS  BORN       ...  24 

HULSE,  WILLIAM       .        .        ....        .        .  240 

JAMES,  FRANK 478 

JAMES,  JESSE V        .        •        •  318 

JARRETTE,  CAPTAIN  JOHN       .        .        .                „  317 

KERR,  CHARITY .  301 

LANE,  GENERAL  JAMES  H 398 

LELAND,  CYRUS,  SR., 428 

LELAND,  LIEUTENANT  CYRUS,  JR 397 

LIPSEY,  CHALKLEY  T 141 

LONG,  PEYTON 463 

MADDOX,  DICK       .  251 


10     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

MADDOX,  GEORGE  W 357 

MAPS — 

1.  Showing  Quantrill's  Operations  in  Kansas    facing  index 

2.  Showing  Localities  in  Lawrence  at  time  of  Massacre 

.     facing  page  335 

3.  Plan  of  Morgan  Walker  House       ....  157 

4.  Fletcher  Farm  and  Ottawa  Crossing     .        .        .  402 

5.  Attack  on  Fort  Baxter 423 

6.  Baxter  Springs  Massacre 426 

7.  The  Wakefield  Farm       .       v     '  -.  , -     .        .        .  472 
McMuRTRY,  LEE       .        .        .        .-''..        .        .        .  257 
FARMER,  ALLEN           ....        .  .'i     .        .        .  464 

PELATHE,  THE  SHAWNEE 332 

PLUMB,  MAJOR  PRESTON  B.  — 

1.  As  United  States  Senator 40S 

2.  In  Uniform  of  Major        .        .        .        .        .411 

POOL,  DAVE 424 

QUANTRILL,  WILLIAM  C frontispiece 

QUANTRILL,  WILLIAM  C.,  in  Confederate  Uniform           .  421 

QUANTRILL,  CAROLINE  CLARKE 31 

QUANTRILL,  THOMAS  H. 23 

RANDLETT,  LIEUTENANT   REUBEN  A.           ....  226 

RANKIN,  COLONEL  JOHN  K 399 

READ,  FRED  W. 367 

REVOLVER,  COLT'S  NAVY,  Model  of  1843        ...  321 

RIGGS,  JUDGE  SAMUEL  A 366 

SAVAGE,  JOSEPH 347 

SHARPS 's  RIFLE  Carried  in  Morgan  Walker  Raid  by  Edwin 

Morrison 152 

SHAWNEE  HOUSE,  LAWRENCE,  (the  old  Waverley  House)  385 

SOUTHWICK,   ALBERT           143 

SPEER,   JOHN,   the   Covenanter 38S 

SPEER,  JOHN  M. 391 

SPEER,  ROBERT 391 

TAYLOR,  FLETCH          .        .        .        .        .        .        .        .  440 

THORPE,  S.  M 351 

TODD,  CAPTAIN  GEORGE 454 

TRASK,  JOSIAH  C 350 


MAPS  AND  ILLUSTRATIONS 


VAN  NESS,  ALICE 
WALKER,  MORGAN 
WALKER,  MORGAN,  HOUSE  OF 
WALKER,  SHERIFF  SAMUEL 
WHITE   TURKEY 
YOUNGER,   COLE 
YOUNGER,   JAMES 


11 

304 
154 
156 
129 
381 
432 
178 


TABLE  OF  CONTENTS 

PREFACE    5 

Chapter  I 

THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY 17 

Chapter  II 

EARLY  LIFE  OF  QUANTRILL        .        .        .  .          42 

Chapter  III 

FROM  OHIO  TO  KANSAS 54 

Chapter  IV 

QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH      ....          62 
Chapter  V 

QUANTRILL  AS  A  KANSAS  TEACHER      ....          86 
Chapter  VI 

QUANTRILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART  —  LAWRENCE      .        .        103 
Chapter  VII 

QUANTRILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART  —  A  BORDER  RUFFIAN 

AT   LAWRENCE 113 

Chapter  VIII 

QUANTRILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART  —  A  JAYHAWKER  AT 

LAWRENCE 131 

Chapter  IX 

QUANTRILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART  —  THE  TRAITOR  —  THE 

MORGAN  WALKER  RAID 140 

Chapter  X 

QUANTRILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART  —  THE  TRAITOR  —  THE 

MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  .        .        .        .       ,-.,"•        152 
Chapter  XI 

QUANTRILL  THE  FORSWORN  —  WHAT  HE  TOLD  THE 

MISSOURIANS 166 

Chapter  XII 

AFTERMATH  OF  THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID      .        .        174 
Chapter  XIII 

QUANTRILL 's  RETURN  TO  KANSAS       .        .        .        .        181 


14  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Chapter  XIV 

QUANTRILL  BECOMES  A  GUERRILLA     ....        196 
Chapter  XV 

CONDITIONS  IN  MISSOURI 206 

Chapter  XVI 

QUANTRILL     BECOMES     NOTORIOUS  —  AUBRY     AND 

OTHER  SKIRMISHES 220 

Chapter  XVII 

QUANTRILL  OUTLAWED  —  BIG  BLUE  BRIDGE  —  TATE 

HOUSE    .        .        .  •  -v. 236 

Chapter  XVIII 

QUANTRILL,  THE  GUERRILLA  CHIEF  —  PINK  HILL  — 
THE  CLARK  FARM  —  AT  SNI  FORD  —  THE  LOWE 

HOUSE 248 

Chapter  XIX 

QUANTRILL  IN  THE  SUMMER  OF  1862  .        .        .        .  ^     254 
Chapter  XX 

QUANTRILL  AT  INDEPENDENCE 259 

Chapter  XXI 

QUANTRILL  A  CONFEDERATE  CAPTAIN        .        .        .        269 
Chapter  XXII 

QUANTRILL  GOES  TO  RICHMOND,  VIRGINIA        .        .        278 
Chapter  XXIII 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  —  I         ....        284 

Chapter  XXIV 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  —  II        ....        298 

Chapter  XXV 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  —  III      ....        308 

Chapter  XXVI 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  —  IV       ....        323 

Chapter  XXVII 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  —  V        .        .        .        .        329 

Chapter  XXVIII 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  —  VI       ....        335 

Chapter  XXIX 

THE  LAWRENCE   MASSACRE  —  VII  —  INCIDENTS   OF 
THE  MASSACRE  346 


TABLE  OF  CONTENTS  15 

Chapter  XXX 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  —  VIII  —  DEPARTURE  OF 

THE  GUERRILLAS 378 

Chapter  XXXI 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  —  IX  —  PURSUIT  OF  THE 

GUERRILLAS 396 

Chapter  XXXII 

THE  BAXTER  SPRINGS  MASSACRE        .        .        .        .        421 
Chapter  XXXIII 

DISINTEGRATION  OF  THE  QUANTRILL  BAND        .        .        435 
Chapter  XXXIV 

QUANTRILL  IN  THE  SUMMER  OF  1864        .        .        .        451 
Chapter  XXXV 

QUANTRILL  LEAVES  MISSOURI     .        .        .        .        .        454 
Chapter  XXXVI 

QUANTRILL  IN  KENTUCKY 460 

Chapter  XXXVII 

QUANTRILL  THE  FATALIST 466 

Chapter  XXXVIII 

THE  LAST  BATTLE 471 

Chapter  XXXIX 

DEATH  480 


THE   QUANTRILL  FAMILY 

HAGERSTOWN,  Maryland,  seems  to  have  been  the  seat 
of  the  Quantrill  family  in  America.  No  effort  to  trace 
its  origin  has  been  made,  but  from  what  information 
there  is  to  be  had  on  the  subject  and  from  a  study  of  the  Chris- 
tian names,  it  would  appear  that  the  family  is  of  English  ex- 
traction. And  Captain  Thomas  Quantrill  boasted  that  his  an- 
cestors came  from  England  to  Maryland,  and  that  they  were 
pure  English. 

Thomas  Quantrill  was  the  captain  of  a  company  raised  at 
Hagerstown  for  service  in  the  War  of  1812.  It  is  of  record  that 
he  was  a  brave  soldier,  and  that  he  was  wounded  at  the  battle 
of  North  Point,  as  were  two  of  his  men,  Lazarus  B.  Wilson  and 
his  brother  Samuel.  And  a  number  were  killed.1 

Captain  Thomas  Quantrill  was  a  blacksmith  at  Hagerstown. 
He  married  Miss  Judith  Heiser,  a  sister  of  William  Heiser,  a 
man  of  high  character,  for  many  years  the  president  of  a  bank 
at  Hagerstown,  and  a  man  of  wealth.2 

i  Letter  of  Oliver  M.  Wilson,  Kansas  City,  Kansas,  April  2,  1898,  to 
W.  W.  Scott,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  Wilson  was  the  son  of 
the  soldier,  Lazarus  B.  Wilson.  He  mentions  a  history  and  roster  of 
Captain  Thomas  Quan trill's  Company  as  being  in  his  possession. 

a  Thomas  Quantrill  quit  his  trade  and  became  a  horse-trader. 

He  was  a  blacksmith  and  married  Judy  Heiser,  sister  of  William 
Heiser,  for  a  great  many  years  president  of  the  Hagerstown  bank  and  one 
of  the  wealthiest  men  in  the  locality  and  of  high  character.  Probably  the 
wealth  of  his  brother-in-law  fired  the  ambition  of  Mr.  Thomas  Quantrill 
to  make  riches  faster  than  over  the  anvil.  For  he  gave  up  blacksmithing 
and  turned  horse  trader.  Our  informant  recalls  yet  more  than  one  instance 
that  got  abroad  of  Mr.  Quantrill 's  sharp  practices  in  horse-dealing.  He 
was  a  handsome  man,  dressed  well,  lived  fast,  and  merely  gained  the 
reputation  of  a  sharp  operator  who  was  to  be  watched  in  a  business 
transaction;  he  didn't  forfeit  his  standing  in  the  community  beyond  this 
notoriety  for  sharp-dealing.  —  Clipping  from  the  Keokuk,  Iowa,  Gate  City, 
August  17,  1882,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

The  Quantrill  blood  was  evidently  bad,  the  grandfather  of  the  raider 


18     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BOEDER  WARS 

A  number  of  children  were  born  to  Captain  Thomas  Quan- 
trill  at  Hagerstown,  among  them  William  (so  named  for  his 
Uncle  William  Heiser),  Archibald,  Thomas  Henry,  and  Jesse 
Duncan.  The  last  named  died  when  eight  or  nine  years  old,  and 
William's  name  was  changed  to  Jesse  Duncan.  There  were  other 
sons,  the  names  of  whom  are  not  remembered.  One  of  them,  it 
is  said,  became  a  pirate  on  the  high  seas,  operating  many  years 
on  the  Gulf  of  Mexico  between  Galveston  Island  and  the  mouth 
of  the  Sabine;  but  this  may  have  been  a  brother  of  Captain 
Thomas  Quantrill. 

Captain  Thomas  Quantrill  often  visited  his  son  Thomas 
Henry,  in  Canal  Dover,  where  he  was  regarded  as  a  man  of  fine 
appearance.^  He  moved  to  Washington  City,  where  he  died  of 
apoplexy.  He  was  stricken  in  front  of  the  Treasury  building 
and  died  suddenly. 

Jesse  Duncan  Quantrill  was  sent  to  New  York  City  to  at- 
tend school.  He  returned  to  Hagerstown  with  two  accomplish- 
ments—  boxing  and  great  skill  with  a  pen.  He  was  his  father's 
favorite,  was  indulged,  and  grew  up  in  idleness  and  mischief. 
He  was  a  sort  of  fop  or  dandy  with  criminal  instincts  and  ten- 
dencies, a  dashing,  handsome  man,  wholly  devoid  of  moral  char- 
was  a  professional  gambler.  I  knew  him  pretty  well,  having  been  introduced 
to  him  by  his  son,  Thomas  H.  Quantrill,  at  Dover,  and  met  him  afterwards, 
occasionally  in  this  city.  A  brother  of  Thomas  H.  Quantrill  was  what 
would  now  be  called  a  confidence  man;  he  traveled  through  the  Southern 
States,  locating  in  some  city  where  he  would  engage  himself  to  the  Belle 
of  the  place  and  buy  all  the  jewelry,  watches,  carriages,  etc.,  he  could  get 
credit  for  and  just  about  the  time  the  bills  would  come  due,  would  skip  to 
some  other  place  and  go  through  the  same  performance.  He  was  finally 
arrested,  tried  and  convicted,  and  sentenced  to  states  prison  for  twenty 
years.  —  Letter  of  John  W.  Harmon,  1837  Dean  Street,  Brooklyn,  N.  Y., 
December  19,  1900,  to  W.  W.  Scott,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

John  W.  Harmon  was  a  traveling  salesman  who  lived  many  years  in 
Canal  Dover,  Ohio,  and  who  moved  to  Brooklyn.  He  was  a  man  of  excellent 
character,  as  the  author  is  informed  by  Mrs.  Frances  Beeson  Thompson, 
daughter  of  H.  V.  Beeson,  who  kneiv  him  until  the  Beeson  family  came  to 
Kansas. 

It  will  be  noted  that  Captain  Thomas  Quantrill  visited  Brooklyn. 
Perhaps  he  did  so  in  his  vocation  of  professional  gambler. 

3  I  have  seen  old  Mr.  Quantrill  the  father  of  Thos.  In  Canal  Dover 
frequently,  a  tall  6  foot  portly  old  Gent.,  quite  respectf ull  looking.  —  From 
letter  of  H.  V.  Beeson,  "Paolo.,  Kansas,  June  5,  1.880,  to  W.  W.  Scott,  now 
in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY  19 

acter.  Mary  Lane,  daughter  of  Seth  Lane,  said  to  have  been  one 
of  the  foremost  citizens  of  Hagerstown,  became  infatuated  with 
him,  and  they  were  clandestinely  married.  She  was  to  inherit 
a  considerable  sum  of  money  at  a  certain  age  which  she  had  not 
attained  by  a  year  when  married.  By  making  a  very  full  and 
sweeping  relinquishment  he  secured  this  money  from  the  bank 
in  which  it  had  been  deposited,  and  which,  it  was  affirmed,  be- 
longed in  part  to  Seth  Lane  and  his  son.  When  his  wife  had 
attained  her  majority  he  endeavored  to  collect  the  money  again, 
alleging  that  the  bank  had  no  legal  right  to  pay  the  money  at 
the  time  it  had  been  paid. 

With  the  money  of  his  wife  he  had  engaged  in  the  grocery 
business  at  Williamsport,  Md.  This  business  was  a  failure,  and 
the  money  was  lost.  He  then  determined  to  engage  in  larger 
operations.  He  went  to  New  York  City,  where  he  represented 
himself  to  be  the  son  of  a  wealthy  Virginia  merchant  well  known 
there,  and  purchased  on  credit  a  large  stock  of  goods,  which  he 
caused  to  be  shipped  to  himself  at  Baltimore.  This  swindle  was 
discovered  by  the  merchants  in  time  to  stop  a  portion  of  the 
shipment  and  save  some  of  the  goods.  But  he  succeeded  in  dis- 
posing of  a  part  of  the  merchandise  in  a  way  which  baffled  all 
attempts  to  trace  it.  To  avoid  the  consequences  of  this  transac- 
tion he  availed  himself  of  the  benefit  of  the  law  for  bankrupts, 
but  as  his  action  was  based  on  fraud  he  was  cast  into  prison. 
For  six  months  his  beautiful  wife  shared  his  cell.  He  finally  se- 
cured an  acquittal  and  was  released.  While  in  prison  he  had 
read  law  under  directions  from  William  Price,  one  of  the  lead- 
ing lawyers  of  Western  Maryland. 

From  Maryland  Jesse  D.  Quantrill  went  to  St.  Louis,  Mo., 
where  he  was  soon  in  trouble  and  in  jail,  securing  his  release 
finally  through  the  efforts  of  his  wife,  who  still  clung  to  him. 
Upon  his  release  he  took  boat  for  Cincinnati,  and  while  on  board 
committed  a  forgery  which  seems  to  have  been  discovered  at 
once,  and  for  which  he  escaped  punishment.  From  Cincinnati 
he  went  to  New  Orleans,  where  he  became  dissipated  and  began 
to  neglect  and  abuse  his  wife.  She  fell  ill,  and  her  condition 
appeared  to  work  a  change  in  him.  He  started  by  boat  to  take 
her  home  to  Maryland;  but  while  the  boat  was  yet  on  the  Mis- 


20     QUANTBILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

sissippi  river  he  committed  a  forgery  on  a  Cincinnati  bank.  He 
was  soon  detected  in  this  crime,  was  taken  to  Cincinnati  and 
thrown  into  jail.  After  a  confinement  in  prison  of  seven  months 
his  wife  succeeded  in  securing  him  bail,  which  he  forfeited  by 
not  appearing  for  trial,  deserting  his  wife  at  that  place.  She 
next  heard  of  him  at  Hagerstown,  where  he  was  in  trouble  for 
a  forgery  he  committed  there,  but  for  which  he  escaped  con- 
viction. He  then  went  to  Pennsylvania,  where  he  was  sentenced 
to  a  term  of  imprisonment  in  the  penitentiary  for  forgery,  and 
he  served  three  years.  While  serving  this  sentence  his  wife  se- 
cured a  divorce  from  him,  it  is  said,  by  the  act  of  the  Maryland 
Legislature.  When  he  heard  of  her  action  in  procuring  the 
divorce  he  made  many  savage  threats  against  her  life.  But  upon 
his  release  from  prison  he  married  a  Pennsylvania  lady,  and 
was  soon  thereafter  arrested  for  another  forgery,  for  which  he 
was  sentenced  to  a  term  of  seven  years  in  the  penitentiary. 

Meanwhile,  Mrs.  Quantrill  had  married  Mr.  A.  Cowton, 
proprietor  of  the  United  States  Hotel,  Cumberland,  Maryland, 
with  whom  she  was  living  happily.  Quantrill  was  released  from 
the  Pennsylvania  penitentiary  in  1848.  In  March,  1849,  he  ap- 
peared in  Cumberland.  On  the  fifth  of  that  month  Mrs.  Cowton 
was  in  her  apartments,  when  a  servant  showed  up  a  gentleman 
who  had  just  arrived  in  the  city.  He  dismissed  the  servant,  and 
closed  and  locked  the  door.  He  then  turned  to  Mrs.  Cowton, 
who  was  horrified  to  behold  Quantrill,  her  former  husband.  There 
was  murder  in  his  looks,  and  she  screamed  for  help.  He  told 
her  that  her  hour  had  come,  caught  her  by  the  throat,  threw 
her  to  the  floor,  placed  his  knee  upon  her  breast,  and  snapped  a 
pistol  in  her  face.  When  the  pistol  missed  fire,  and  just  as  he 
was  drawing  a  long  knife,  several  persons  who  had  been  attracted 
by  her  screams,  broke  down  the  door  and  rescued  Mrs.  Cowton. 
For  this  attempt  to  murder  he  was  sentenced  to  a  term  of  im- 
prisonment. He  must  have  possessed  a  fascinating  personality, 
for  he  soon  obtained  an  unaccountable  influence  over  the  prison 
officials  and  was  allowed  considerable  freedom,  even  acting  as 
guard  over  other  prisoners.  In  1851  he  was  pardoned  upon  con- 
dition that  he  would  leave  the  state  and  never  return. 

When  Jesse  D.  Quantrill  left  Maryland  he  went  to  Canal 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY  21 

Dover,  Ohio,  where  his  brother  Thomas  Henry  then  lived.  There 
he  was  engaged  for  a  time  as  jockey  and  horse-dealer,  for  or  in 
connection  with  his  father.  And  it  is  quite  probable  that  the 
resident  brother  was  interested  in  the  business.  The  horses 
were  purchased  and  prepared  for  the  markets  in  the  cities  to  the 
east.  The  tails  of  the  horses  were  scored  on  the  under  side  and 
then  tied  up  in  an  elevated  position  to  heal,  usually  suspended 
for  a  time  from  an  over-head  beam.  This  was  a  cruel  process, 
resorted  to  for  the  purpose  of  causing  the  horse's  tail  when 
healed  to  stand  away  from  the  body,  giving  it  a  graceful  car- 
riage, greatly  improving  the  general  appearance  of  the  animal. 
After  a  year  or  two  spent  in  this  business  at  Canal  Dover,  Jesse 
D.  Quantrill  disappeared  and  never  returned  there,  though  in- 
telligence of  him  and  his  doings  reached  the  village  for  years 
afterwards.  It  was  known  that  he  assumed  various  names,  one 
of  which  was  Dr.  Hayne ;  he  was  also  known  as  Jesse  Elliott  and 
Jesse  Elliott  Quantrill.  He  married  and  deserted  six  women.* 
There  has  been  much  said  of  a  John  Quantrill  who  was  be- 
lieved to  have  become  a  guerrilla  in  the  West  during  the  Civil 
War.  It  was  supposed  that  he  was  in  Missouri,  from  whence  he 


4  Thomas  Quantrill  and  myself  at  one  time  had  a  conversation  about 
this  Jesse  E.  Quantrill,  he  was  a  Dead  beat  and  confidence  man  Mr.  Quant- 
rill informed  me  that  he  took  the  name  of  Elliott  for  his  middle  name 
unlawfully  &  for  some  reason  he  thought  strange  he  also  informed  me 
Jesse  E.  went  to  Philadelphia  and  bought  up  Horses,  stages  &c.  to  start 
opposition  lines  of  stages  from  Philadelphia  &  Baltimore  against  the  great 
contractor  Beeside  that  the  Stage  Co  Bought  him  off  at  a  Big  Price 
He  also  informed  me  that  he,  Jesse  E.  went  by  the  name  of  Doctor  Hayne 
that  he  had  been  in  about  every  Penitentiary  in  Penn.,  Maryland,  Virginia 
&  Kentucky  and  Perhaps  Ohio.  My  impression  was  that  he  was  a  Bro 
or  Cousin  of  the  Mr.  Thos  Quantrill.  —  From  letter  of  H.  V,  Beeson,  Paola, 
Kansas,  June  5,  1880,  to  W.  W.  Scott,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

This  account  of  Jesse  D.  Quantrill  is  taken  from  various  sources, 
principally  from  articles  in  newspapers,  the  most  important  of  which  were 
published  in  the  Philadelphia  Times  in  1884,  in  the  New  York  Graphic,  by 
"Gath"  (George  Alfred  Townsend)  in  1881,  and  in  the  Keokuk,  Iowa, 
Gate  City,  August  17,  1882.  There  is  much  error  and  confusion  in  these 
and  all  other  articles  examined  on  the  subject,  most  of  them  supposing 
Jessed  D.  Quantrill 'to  have  been  the  guerrilla,  William  C.  Quantrill.  "Gath" 
makes  William  C.  Quantrill  the  son  of  Jesse  D.  But  there  is  much  that 
is  true  and  accurately  stated  in  them.  The  career  of  Jesse  D.  Quantrill 
as  set  out  here  may  be  relied  upon  as  correct.  By  his  first  wife  he  had  a 
son,  named  Lawrence  Quantrill. 


22  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

found  his  way  to  Texas,  where  he  was  befriended  by  a  brother 
Freemason  named  Imboden.  He  is  credited  with  having  been 
a  dead  shot,  and  with  having  killed  thirty-eight  men  in  one  bat- 
tle. It  is  asserted  that  he  died  in  New  Orleans  of  wounds,  of 
which  he  received  many.  There  is  nothing  positively  known  of 
this  John  Quantrill,  and  it  is  probable  that  he  originated  in  the 
vague  conjectures  as  to  the  identity  of  William  C.  Quantrill. 

Archibald  Quantill  was  a  printer  and  was  at  one  time  a  com- 
positor on  the  National  Intelligencer,  Washington  City.  He 
must  have  been  among  the  younger  children  of  Captain  Thomas 
Quantrill,  for  he  married  Miss  Mary  A.  Sands,  whose  age  is  given 
as  thirty-two  in  1862.  Mrs.  Mary  A.  Quantrill  was  a  staunch 
and  loyal  supporter  of  the  Union  during  the  Civil  War.  Her 
brother,  George  W.  Sands,  was  a  member  of  the  Maryland  Legis- 
lature and  was  U.  S.  collector  of  internal  revenue  under  Presi- 
dent Lincoln.  In  September,  1862,  Stonewall  Jackson  parted 
from  General  Lee  at  Frederick,  Maryland,  on  his  way  to  besiege 
Harper's  Ferry.  As  Jackson  passed  through  Frederick  Mrs. 
Quantrill  and  her  daughter  Virginia,  afterwards  Mrs.  Perry 
Brown,  were  standing  at  their  gate  waving  a  number  of  flags  — 
the  Stars  and  Stripes.  The  soldiers  angrily  ordered  them  to 
throw  down  the  flags,  and  a  lieutenant,  with  his  sword,  cut  a  flag 
from  the  hands  of  Virginia  Quantrill.  But  she  continued  to 
wave  Old  Glory,  and  it  was  again  cut  from  her  hands  by  the  lieu- 
tenant 's  sword.  Mrs.  Quantrill  then  took  up  a  large  flag  which 
she  waved  aloft  until  the  army  had  passed  through  the  town. 
Many  of  the  Confederate  officers  and  some  of  the  soldiers 
applauded  her,  an  officer  saying  with  a  salute  and  marked  cour- 
tesy, "To  you,  madam,  not  to  your  flag."  Archibald  Quantrill 
was  in  Washington  City  at  the  time  at  work  at  his  trade.  For 
this  brave  and  patriotic  act  these  women  have  not  had  proper 
credit.  Indeed,  they  have  been  robbed  of  the  fame  of  the  deed 
by  a  great  poet,  and  a  decrepit  and  bed-ridden  lady  of  Frederick 
given  the  honor  for  something  she  did  not  do.5 

s  This  incident  inspired  the  beautiful  and  patriotic  poem  of  Whittier, 
entitled  Barbara  Frietchie.  Barbara  lived  some  distance  from  the  line  of 
march,  and  it  is  not  probable  that  she  saw  any  of  the  soldiers  who  marched 
through  Frederick  that  day.  She  was  loyal  and  brave,  it  has  been  claimed, 


23 


became  a  tinner. 


Thomas  Henry  Quantrill  was  born  at  Hagerstown,  Md.,  Feb- 
ruary 19,  1813.  He  was  a  tinker  by  trade.6  He  afterwards 
He  had  relatives,  the  Heisers,  living  at  Cham- 
bersburg,  Pa.,  whom  he  visited,  perhaps  in 
the  strolling  vocation  of  tinker.  With  one 
of  these  he  learned  the  tinner  trade.  While 
there  he  met  Miss  Caroline  Cornelia  Clarke 
(or  Clark)  and  became  engaged  to  marry 
her.  Some  relative  had  persuaded  him 
that  it  would  be  to  his  advantage  to  settle 
at  Canal  Dover,  Ohio,  and  he  had  deter- 
mined to  go  there  for  that  purpose  in  the 
fall  of  1836.  Several  Hagerstown  people 
were  settling  at  Canal  Dover  about  that 
time.  It  was  his  wish  that  Miss  Clarke 
should  accompany  him  as  his  wife,  and  they  were  married  at 

6  Statement  of  Mrs.  Caroline  Clarke  Quantrill,  his  widow,  published 
in  the  Chicago  Herald,  March  4,  1894. 

There  is  some  reason  to  believe  that  the  name  of  Thomas  Henry 
Quantrill  was  in  fact  Thomas  Hart  Quantrill,  or  that  it  had  been  at  one 
time.  In  the  family  Bible  it  is  written  Thomas  Henry,  but  the  Quantrills 
seem  to  have  been  addicted  to  the  habit  of  changing  their  names.  His  son, 
the  guerrilla,  assumed  the  name  of  Charley  Hart  in  Kansas  to  conceal  his 
identity,  and  it  has  been  said  that  he  used  the  name  Hart  because  it  had 
belonged  to  his  father.  He  always  went  by  the  name  of  Charley  Quantrill 
in  Missouri.  For  the  purposes  of  treachery  he  often  pretended  to  be  a 
Federal  Captain  Clarke,  and  he  was  known  as  Captain  Clarke  in  Kentucky 
in  the  spring  of  1865,  and  he  gave  that  as  his  name  at  first  when  mortally 
wounded. 


QuantrilTs  Father 


and  would  have  waved  her  flag  in  the  face  of  General  Jackson  himself  if 
she  had  been  given  an  opportunity.  Her  house  is  still  standing,  on  the 
banks  of  Carroll  creek,  in  Frederick.  Whittier  stated  thafr  he  secured  his 
information  of  this  matter  from  Mrs.  E.  D.  E.  N.  Southworth,  the  novelist. 
There  is  now  doubt  as  to  the  loyalty  of  Barbara  Frietchie.  Prof. 
E.  Haworth,  of  the  Kansas  University,  informs  me  that  she  was  a  staunch 
supporter  of  the  Southern  Confederacy.  This  information  he  had  from 
her  relatives.  The  poem  is  as  follows: 

BAEBAEA     FEIETCHIE 

["This  poem,"  says  Mr.  Whittier,  "was  written  in  strict  conformity 
to  the  account  of  the  incident  as  I  had  it  from  respectable  and  trustworthy 


24     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Chambersburg,  October  11,  1836.  A  little  later  he  secured  a 
contract  to  do  some  tin  work  in  Canal  Dover  for  Louis  L.  Lee, 
and  as  this  work  was  to  be  done  at  once,  the  young  people  set 
out  immediately.  The  contract  was  secured  towards  the  latter 
part  of  November.  They  drove  overland  in  their  own  buggy  and 
arrived  in  December,  stopping  at 
first  at  the  public  house  or  tav- 
ern, where  they  remained  but  a 
short  time,  going  to  housekeeping 
hi  what  was  locally  known  as  the 
"Tom  West  house"  with  S.  Scott 
and  wife7  This  was  a  small  one- 
story  frame  house  near  the  corner 
of  Factory  and  Fourth  streets.  Hwue  b 
It  was  afterwards  in  the  Quantrill  w"  bom 

family,  seemingly  the  property  of  Captain  Thomas  Quantrill, 

7  Memo,  made  by  W.  W.  Scott,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 


sources.  It  has  since  been  the  subject  of  a  good  deal  of  conflicting  testi- 
mony, and  the  story  was  probably  incorrect  in  some  of  its  details.  It  is 
admitted  by  all  that  Barbara  Frietchie  was  no  myth,  but  a  worthy  and 
highly  esteemed  gentle-woman  intensely  loyal  and  a  hater  of  the  Slavery 
Rebellion,  holding  her  Union  flag  sacred  and  keeping  it  with  her  Bible; 
that  when  the  Confederates  halted  before  her  house,  and  entered  her 
dooryard,  she  denounced  them  in  vigorous  language,  shook  her  cane  in 
their  faces,  and  drove  them  out;  and  when  General  Burnside's  troops 
followed  close  upon  Jackson's,  she  waved  her  flag  and  cheered  them.  It 
is  stated  that  May  Quantrill,  a  brave  and  loyal  lady  in  another  part  of  the 
city,  did  wave  her  flag  in  sight  of  the  Confederates.  It  is  possible  that 
there  has  been  a  blending  of  the  two  incidents."] 


Up  from  the  meadows  rich  with  corn, 
Clear  in  the  cool  September  morn, 

The  clustered  spires  of  Frederick  stand 
Green-walled  by  the  hills  of  Maryland. 

Bound  about  them  orchards  sweep, 
Apple  and  peach  tree  fruited  deep, 

Fair  as  the  garden  of  the  Lord 

To  the  eyes  of  the  famished  rebel  horde, 

On  that  pleasant  morn  of  the  early  fall 
When  Lee  marched  over  the  mountain-wall; 

Over  the  mountains  winding  down 
Horse  and  foot,  into  Frederick  town. 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY 


25 


and,  later,  of  Mrs.  Caroline  C.  Quantrill,  probably  by  deed  from 
her  father-in-law.  It  was  the  home  of  the  Quantrills  in  Canal 
Dover  until  sold  by  Mrs.  Quantrill  about  the  year  1885. 

Soon  after  his  marriage  Thomas  Henry  Quantrill  wrote  and 


Forty  flags  with  their  silver  stars, 
Forty  flags  with  their  crimson  bars, 

Flapped  in  the  morning  wind:  the  sun 
Of  noon  looked  down,  and  saw  not  one. 

Up  rose  old  Barbara  Frietchie  then, 
Bowed  with  her  fourscore  years  and  ten; 

Bravest  of  all  in  Frederick  town, 

She  took  up  the  flag  the  men  hauled  down; 

In  her  attic  window  the  staff  she  set, 
To  show  that  one  heart  was  loyal  yet. 

Up  the  street  came  the  rebel  tread, 
Stonewall  Jackson  riding  ahead. 

Under  his  slouched  hat  left  and  right 
He  glanced;  the  old  flag  met  his  sight. 

' '  Halt ! "  —  the  dust-brown  ranks  stood  fast. 
"Fire!"  —  out  blazed  the  rifle-blast. 

It  shivered  the  window,  pane  and  sash; 
It  rent  the  banner  with  seam  and  gash. 

Quick,  as  it  fell,  from  the  broken  staff 
Dame  Barbara  snatched  the  silken  scarf. 

She  leaned  far  out  on  the  window-sill, 
And  shook  it  forth  with  a  royal  will. 

"Shoot,  if  you  must,  this  old  gray  head, 
But  spare  your  country's  flag,"  she  said. 

A  shade  of  sadness,  a  blush  of  shame, 
Over  the  face  of  the  leader  came; 

The  nobler  nature  within  him  stirred 
To  life  at  that  woman's  deed  and  word; 

"Who  touches  a  hair  of  yon  gray  head 
Dies  like  a  dog !     March  on !  "  he  said. 

All  day  long  through  Frederick  street 
Sounded  the  tread  of  marching  feet; 

All  day  long  that  free  flag  tost 
Over  the  heads  of  the  rebel  host. 


'.    '  A  • 


26     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

published  a  "Lightning  Calculator."    He  was  by  instinct  a 
mathematician,  and  one  of  high  order,  and  for  several  years  he 
traveled  about  and  sold  his  "Calculator."    He  finally  opened 
a  tin-shop  in  Canal  Dover.     He  wrote  a  book  called  the  "Tin- 
Ever  its  torn  folds  rose  and  fell 
On  the  loyal  winds  that  loved  it  well; 

And  through  the  hill-gaps  sunset  light 
Shone  over  it  with  a  warm  good-night. 

Barbara  Frietchie's  work  is  o'er, 

And  the  Eebel  rides  on  his  raids  no  more. 

Honor  to  her!  and  let  a  tear 

Fall,  for  her  sake,  on  Stonewall 's  bier. 

Over  Barbara  Frietchie's  grave, 
Flag  of  Freedom  and  Union,  wave! 

Peace  and  order  and  beauty  draw 
Bound  thy  symbol  of  light  and  law; 

And  ever  the  stars  above  look  down 
On  the  stars  below  in  Frederick  town! 


In  the  Collection  of  the  author  there  is  a  newspaper-clipping  which 
is  an  account  of  this  incident.  There  is  nothing  to  show  where  or  when 
the  paper  from  which  it  was  cut  was  published,  but  it  is  given  here: 

"FEEDEBICK  TOWN." 


A    HISTORIC    OLD    PLACE  —  BABARA    FRIETCHIE'S    HOME  —  THE    BEAL 
HEORINE  —  THE  BATTLE  OF  THE  MONOCACY. 


It  matters  little  for  the  purposes  of  patriotic  history  that  Whittier, 
in  his  immortal  poem,  has  credited  that  ancient  and  worthy  dame,  Barbara 
Frietchie,  with  a  deed  which  she,  dear  old  soul,  was  physically  incapable  of 
accomplishing.  We  know  too  well  that  on  that  September  morning  of  1862, 
when  Jackson  parted  from  Lee  in  Frederick,  on  his  way  to  besiege  Harper's 
Ferry,  Stonewall  Jackson  and  his  gray  legions  passed  to  the  west  by  a 
route  which  did  not  take  them  within  two  blocks  of  the  now-demolished 
dwelling  on  West  Patrick  street,  wherein  old  Barbara,  hopelessly  bed- 
ridden, was  peacefully  slumbering.  But  the  aged  lady  was  herself  truly 
loyal.  She  would  have  waved  the  Stars  and  Stripes  in  the  face  of  Lee's 
whole  army,  or  of  Jefferson  Davis  himself.  Her  humble  grave  in  the 
Beformed  Cemetery  at  Frederick  would  look  incomplete  without  the  Star- 
Spangled  Banner  drooping  regretfully  over  it.  In  a  life  which  wanted  but 
four  years  of  a  century,  old  Barbara  must  have 

SEEN,    FELT    AND    THOUGHT    MUCH. 

The  banks  of  Carroll  Creek  are  favorable  to  meditation,  and  it  is  fair  to 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY  27 

man's  Guide"  or  the  " Tinner's  Guide,"  embellished  with  draw- 
ings showing  designs  for  various  articles  of  tinware  and  such 
as  could  be  made  from  sheet-iron  —  pans,  pipes,  cups,  elbows, 
etc.  This  book  was  published  with  money  belonging  to  the 


infer  that  the  historic  stream  was  more  picturesque  and  less  odoriferous 
in  her  days  than  now,  when  the  tanyards  of  Frederick  pollute  it  with  their 
mingled  abominations.  From  the  spot  beneath  the  weeping  willow,  a 
hundred  yards  below  her  home,  near  the  City  Spring,  Barbara  must  have 
often  looked  on  the  ruinous  and  picturesque  shanty,  here  depicted  and  still 
standing,  in  which  the  Father  of  his  Country  had  his  headquarters  with 
Gen.  Braddock  and  Benjamin  Franklin  when  the  ill-fated  expedition  to 
Fort  Duquesne  passed  through  Frederick  in  1755.  The  place  is  now 
occupied  by  two  colored  families,  and  its  dingy  rooms  suggest  a  startling 
mental  contrast  of  the  state  of  things  then  and  now.  We  know  that 
Washington,  though  fitted  to  grace  with  his  majestic  presence  the  Courts 
of  the  proudest  Empire  in  the  world,  retained  after  his  election  to  the 
Presidency  the  Spartan  simplicity  of  taste  which  distinguished  him  during 
his  military  career.  He  may  have  thought  —  nay  he  must  have  thought  — 
when  the  world  did  homage  at  his  feet,  of  the  hours  spent  in  that  simple 
cottage  on  the  banks  of  Carroll  Creek. 

THE   TEUE   HEROINE. 

But  to  return  to  the  ancient  and  neglected  Barbara.  She  was  born 
in  Lancaster,  Pa.,  in  1766,  and  died  in  Frederick  on  Dec.  18,  1862,  three 
months  after  the  episode  with  which  her  name  is  falsely  but  forever  asso- 
ciated. The  true  honor  of  the  waving  of  the  flag  has  been  shown  in  the 
light  of  facts  to  belong  to  Mrs.  Mary  A.  Quantrill.  The  story,  as  told  by 
Joseph  Walker,  of  Washington,  D.  C.,  a  son-in-law  of  Mrs.  Quantrill,  is  as 
follows,  and  contains  enough  elements  of  romance  to  cause  no  regret  at  the 
spoiling  of  Whittier's  poem,  except  in  the  involuntary  and  unintentional 
injustice  done  by  the  distinguished  poet  to  Mrs.  Quantrill  herself. 

Mrs.  Quantrill  was  at  the  time  a  handsome  woman,  about  32  years  of 
age.  Her  husband  was  employed  as  a  compositor  on  The  National  Intelli- 
gencer in  Washington,  while  she  lived  at  Frederick  with  her  children. 

On  the  day  when  Jackson  passed  through  the  Mountain  City  Mrs. 
Quantrill  and  her  daughter  Virgie,  afterwards  Mrs.  Perry  Brown,  were 
standing  at  their  gate.  They  had  several  Union  flags,  which  they  waved 
as  the  troops  of  Jackson  passed  by.  Virgie  was  waving  a  flag  when 
several  rebel  soldiers  angrily  called  to  her  to  throw  it  down;  and,  as  she 
persisted,  a  Lieutenant  drew  his  sword  and  cut  the  flag  from  her  hand. 
Still  she  persisted,  and  once  more  it  was  cut  down.  Then  Mrs.  Quan- 
trill displayed  a  larger  flag,  and  continued  to  wave  it  till  the  ranks 
had  passed  by.  They  were  not  further  molested.  Many  of  the 
rebel  officers  and  soldiers  murmured  applause  at  their  courage  and  treated 
them  with  marked  courtesy,  one  officer  saluting  Mrs.  Quantrill  as  he  re- 
marked, "To  you,  madam,  not  to  your  flag." 

Whittier  says  that  he  derived  his  information  as  to  Barbara  from 
Mrs.  E.  D.  E.  N.  Southworth,  the  well-known  novelist.  This  may  well  have 
been,  but  it  is  very  clear  that  he  did  not  get  at  the  facts. 

MRS.   QUANTRILL 

appears  to  have  been  a  woman  of  superior  intelligence.  She  was  for  many 
years  a  teacher  in  Frederick,  and  was  a  frequent  contributor  to  the  Evening 


28  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

school-fund  of  the  village,  perhaps  before  the  organization  of 
the  Union  School.  Quantrill  was  one  of  the  trustees  having 
this  money  in  charge.  By  collusion  with  one  of  his  colleagues 
the  money  was  used  to  pay  for  printing  the  "Guide."  In 
some  way  H.  V.  Beeson  discovered  the  misuse  of  the  school- 
funds  and  called  public  attention  to  the  matter.  This  angered 
Quantrill,  and  he  threatened  to  kill  Beeson,  which,  no  doubt, 
he  intended  to  do.  One  evening,  late  in  autumn,  he  entered 
Beeson 's  house  with  a  cocked  derringer  in  his  hand.  Beeson, 
at  the  time,  was  sitting  before  his  fire  heating  the  point  of  a 
large  iron  poker,  which,  when  hot,  he  intended  to  plunge  into 
a  cup  of  cider  which  he  held  in  his  hand,  preparatory  to  drink- 
ing, a  very  common  method  of  that  day  for  the  treatment  of 
cider  and  other  liquors.  When  Quantrill  entered,  Beeson  rose 
suddenly  and  struck  him  on  the  head  with  the  poker  before  he 
could  shoot,  laying  him  unconscious  on  the  floor  with  a  long 
gash  in  his  scalp.  Neighbors  came  in  and  carried  Quantrill  to 
his  own  house,  where  he  was  some  time  recovering  from  the 
blow. 

It  was  about  that  time  that  Quantrill  had  a  difficulty  with 
Mrs.  Roscoe,  the  wife  of  a  Frenchman  who  lived  in  Canal  Dover. 
She  gave  lessons  in  painting  and  was  a  bright,  vivacious  woman. 
Quantrill  made  remarks  derogatory  to  her  character.  These 
remarks  were  persisently  repeated  by  him  about  the  village 
and  finally  came  to  the  ears  of  Mrs.  Roscoe.  She  armed  her- 
self with  an  old-style  "cowhide,"  sought  Quantrill  on  the 
streets,  found  him  talking  to  a  group  of  men  in  a  public  place, 
and  there  administered  to  him  a  sound  whipping  or  "cow- 
hiding." 

The  Canal  Dover  Union  School  was  organized  in  1849. 
In  1850-51  Quantrill  was  an  assistant  to  the  principal.  In  the 
1851-52  term  he  was  the  principal,  in  which  capacity  he  was 
continued  until  his  death,  December  7,  1854.  He  died  of  con- 

Herald  of  York,  Pa.  She  was  a  Miss  Sands,  and  her  brother,  George 
W.  Sands,  was  a  member  of  the  Maryland  Legislature,  and  U.  S.  Collector 
of  Internal  Eevenue  under  President  Lincoln.  The  troubles  between  the 
Government  and  Collector  Sands  are  a  matter  of  recent  history.  Mrs. 
Quantrill  died  about  six  years  ago.  It  is  said  that  she  always  felt  keenly 
the  injustice  Whittier  had  done  her.  A  niece  and  namesake  of  Mrs.  Quan- 
trill was  afterwards  a  clerk  in  the  Treasury  Department. 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY  29 

sumption.     He  was  a  good  teacher  and  was  much  beloved  by 
his  pupils.8 

The  records  in  the  Quantrill  family  Bible  are  as  follows: 

MARRIAGES 

Thomas   Henry   Quantrill   and   Caroline   Cornelia   Clarke, 
October  11,  183$. 

BIRTHS 

William  Clarke  Quantrill  —  born  July  31,  1837. 
Mary  Quantrill  —  born  September  24,  1838. 
Franklin   Quantrill  —  born   November   12,   1840. 
MacLindley   Quantrill  —  born   December   18,    1841. 
Cornelia  Lisette  Quantrill  —  born  June  20,  1843. 
Thomson  Quantrill  —  born  October  3,  1844. 
Clarke  Quantrill  —  born  September  5,  1847. 
Archibald  Rollin  Quantrill  —  born  September  27,  1850. 

DEATHS 

MacLindley  Quantrill  —  died  August  26,  1842. 
Cornelia  Lisette  Quantrill  —  died  July  28,   1844. 
Clarke  Quantrill  —  died  March  — ,  1848. 
Archibald   Rollin   Quantrill  —  died  March   2,   1851.9 


8  Of   Thomas  Henry   Quantrill,   Abraham   Ellis  says,  in  the   Topeka 
Weekly  Capital,  February  3,  1882: 

His  father  [Thomas  Henry  Quantrill,  father  of  William  C.  Quantrill 
of  whom  he  was  speaking]  was  for  many  years  a  teacher  in  the  High  School 
in  that  place  [Canal  Dover] ;  and  I  never  heard  anything  against  his 
character;  but  two  of  his  brothers  died  in  state  prison.  One  was  a  high- 
wayman and  the  other  a  sea  pirate. 

The  pirate  may  have  been  his  uncle.     See  ante. 

Speaking  of  the  wickedness  and  depravity  of  W.  C.  Quantrill,  Ellis, 
in  the  same  article,  says,  "It  was  in  the  bone." 

9  Copied  from  the  Louisville  Courier- Journal,  May  13,   1888.    Mrs. 
Quantrill  exhibited  the  Bible,  saying: 

We  had  eight  children  in  all,  but  four  of  them  died  in  their  infancy. 
Here,  in  the  old  Bible  in  which  the  records  were  kept,  you  see  the  names 
and  dates.  The  records  were  all  made  by  my  husband,  and  I  have  never 
written  a  line  in  the  old  Bible  since  his  death,  which  accounts  for  the 
balance  not  being  in.  Only  one  of  my  children  is  still  alive.  Thomson 
lives  in  Montana,  where  he  has  a  family  and  is  doing  well.  My  daughter 
Mary  died  in  1863.  She  was  never  married.  My  son  Franklin  died  six 
years  ago,  leaving  his  wife  and  four  daughters,  two  of  whom  are  now 
grown.  One  is  a  teacher  at  Canal  Dover. 


30  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Mary  Quantrill  suffered  most  of  her  life  from  curvature 
of  the  spine.  She  was  a  sweet-tempered  girl  of  excellent  char- 
acter and  followed  dressmaking  to  help  support  her  mother 
and  the  family.  Her  sufferings  were  great  but  she  did  not 
complain,  and  she  worked  faithfully  and  patiently  until  her 
death. 

Franklin  Quantrill  was  afflicted  with  a  white  swelling  in 
one  of  his  knees,  which  made  him  a  cripple  for  life.  He  fol- 
lowed the  business  of  fur-dresser,  and  perhaps  bought  and  sold 
furs.  Nothing  whatever  appears  against  his  character. 

Thomson  Quantrill  was  a  vile,  base,  worthless,  despicable 
but  petty  scoundrel.  In  1879  or  1880  he  visited  the  former 
haunts  of  his  brother  William.  For  some  time  he  was  in  Jackson 
county,  Mo.,  and  aided  William  H.  Gregg  to  plant  his  crop  of 
corn.  He  stopped  with  others  of  Quantrill 's  old  command  and 
left  impressions  every  time  that  he  was  a  scurvy  cur.10  He  vis- 
ited the  Torreys  at  Paola,  Kansas,  and  stole  the  pony  of  their 
daughter  Lillie  and  the  revolver  of  the  hired  man.11 


10  His  roving  brother  was  here  a  few  days  ago,  and  took  dinner  with 
me,  he  was  dead  broke.     He  had  eyes  like  Q.  and  some  of  his  movements  re- 
mind me  of  Q.  —  From  letter  of  Charles  F.  Taylor  ("Fletch"  Taylor)  to  W. 
W.  Scott.    Dated  Joplin,  Mo.,  May  4,  1879.    Letter  in  the  Collection  of  the 
author. 

11  Thompson   Quantrill,   youngest   brother   of   William,   visited  us  in 
1869  or  1870,  and  put  up  at  Mr.  Wagstaff's,  nee  Torrey,  and  one  day 
borrowed  Lillie 's  Pony  and   [the]   hired  man's  revolver,  and  has  as  yet 
forgotten  to  return  them.  — From  letter  of  John  8.  Beeson,  of  Beeson  $• 
Baker,  Attorney s-at-Law,  Paola,  Kansas,  Nov.  SI,  1878,  to  W.  W.  Soott, 
now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

Beeson  was  the  son  of  H.  V.  Beeson.  Thomson  Quantrill  rode  the 
pony  to  Independence,  Mo.,  though  he  was  some  days  making  the  trip,  and 
Judge  Wagstaff  had  written  there  to  make  inquiry  about  the  pony.  When 
shown  Wagstaff's  letter  Quantrill  said  he  would  return  to  Paola  and  restore 
the  pony  and  revolver.  He  rode  out  of  town  and  disappeared  and  was 
never  seen  again  at  either  Paola  or  Independence.  The  account  of  this  is 
as  follows: 

Shortly  after  the  close  of  the  war  a  man  arrived  at  Judge  Wagstaff's 
house  and  announced  himself  as  Thompson  Quantrill,  brother  of  the 
guerilla  chief.  He  had  been  sent  by  Mrs.  Quantrill  to  inquire  after  her 
son's  fate,  which  was  then  a  mystery.  Judge  Wagstaff  gave  him  all  the 
information  he  possessed  and  finally  gave  him  a  letter  of  introduction  to 
the  late  lamented  Judge  Woodson  of  Independence,  who,  he  believed,  knew 
many  facts  regarding  Quantrill.  Before  leaving,  Thompson  Quantrill  bor- 
rowed a  pistol  from  Judge  Wagstaff  and  borrowed  a  fine  pony  from  his 
daughter,  with  a  bridle  and  saddle.  Quantrill  not  appearing  for  several 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY 


31 


Moth« 


Thomson  Quantrill  became  a  vagabond  rover,  a  tramp,  a 
hobo,  in  the  West.  Letters  from  him  show  that  he  was  at  or 
near  Tucson,  Arizona,  from  February  10,  1888,  to  April  23,  1888. 
His  mother,  in  the  Courier-  Journal  inter- 
view, May  13,  1888,  said:  "Thomson  lives 
in  Montana  where  he  has  a  family  and  is 
doing  well."  She  must  have  made  that 
statement  knowing  it  was  not  true,  for 
some  of  the  letters  above  mentioned  were 
written  to  her,  and  she  received  them  and 
turned  them  over  to  W.  W.  Scott.12 

The  maiden-name  of  Quantrill  's 
mother  was  Caroline  Cornelia  Clarke.  The 
little  we  know  of  her  early  life  she  told  to 
newspaper  writers.  In  an  interview  printed 
jn  the  Courier-Journal,  May  13,  1888,  she 
said  she  was  born  in  Somerset  county,  Pa.,  April  7,  1819,  and 

days,  Judge  Wagstaff  wrote  to  Judge  Woodson  asking  [him]  to  look  out 
for  Quantrill,  and  inform  him  if  he  saw  him  that  he  was  using  his 
(  Wagstaff  's)  property  without  leave  and  that  he  would  like  to  have  him 
return  it.  Judge  Woodson  had  scarcely  finished  reading  the  letter  when 
Quantrill  rode  up  in  a  careless,  easy  style  and  made  known  his  errand. 
Judge  Woodson  gave  him  all  the  information  he  possessed  and  then  called 
his  attention  to  Judge  Wagstaff  's  letter.  "I  didn't  mean  to  keep  it," 
he  replied,  "but  while  I  was  out  riding  I  thought  I  would  ride  up  here." 
He  departed,  and  from  that  time  neither  Judge  Woodson  nor  Judge  Wag- 
staff  ever  saw  him  again.  He  disappeared  as  mysteriously  as  if  swallowed 
up  by  the  earth.  There  are  many  surmises  regarding  his  fate,  but  the 
most  plausible  one  is  that  some  of  the  old  enemies  of  his  brother  became 
aware  of  his  presence  in  the  country  and  his  brotherhood  to  the  great 
chief  and  killed  him  on  his  way  back  to  Paola.  —  Kansas  City  Times, 
November  £,  1881.  Clipping  in  Quantrill  Collection,  Library  of  the  Kansas 
State  Historical  Society. 

12  The  letters  are  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  They  are 
frivolous  and  indicate  depravity,  and  exhibit  shocking  illiteracy.  In  1890 
he  was  at  Austin,  Texas,  from  which  city  he  wrote  his  mother  a  letter 
which  is  here  reproduced.  It  is  written  on  the  stationery  of  J.  E.  Hudson 
&  Co.,  General  Merchandise,  Burnet,  Texas,  from  which  point  he  probably 
went  to  Austin.  The  letter  is  in  fact  dated  at  Burnet,  but  it  was  posted 
at  Austin,  as  shown  by  the  postmark: 

Austin  Burnet,  Texas,  Feb  17  1890 

Mrs  Caroline  Quantrell 

Dear  Mother 

i  Take  The  Pleasure  of  Droping  you  a  fiew  Lines  To  Let  you  know 
That  i  am  Well  and  hope  you  are  Well  also  i  Think  of  you  day  and  night 
and  Will  Send  for  you  in  The  Spring  I  have  Left  that  Part  of  The  Country 


32 

"after  my  birth  in  Somerset  county  my  father  moved  to  Cham- 
bersburg,  Pa.,  where  I  was  reared  and  educated."  In  a  state- 
ment to  W.  W.  Scott  she  contradicted  the  above  so  far  as  it 
relates  to  her  father,  saying  that  "her  father  &  mother  died 
when  she  was  an  infant,  both  [at  the]  same  time,  of  an  epi- 
demic, at  Stoyestown,  Pa."  '3 

Stoyestown  is  a  small  village,  on  Stony  Creek,  a  tributary 
of  the  Conemaugh,  in  Somerset  county,  some  twenty  miles  south 
of  Johnstown.  In  the  article  above  mentioned  it  was  said  by  the 
reporter  that  Mrs.  Quantrill  had  "bright  light  golden  hair,  blue 
eyes  of  most  intelligent  expression,  a  round  face  that  must  once 
have  been  beautiful,  and  in  which  the  features  of  her  noted  son 
may  be  traced."  I4  She  was  below  the  medium  height,  of  good 
form  without  any  approach  to  obesity,  and  a  catlike  manner 
which  left  the  impression  that  her  character  was  based  upon 
treachery  and  cruelty. 

In  an  interview  printed  in  the  Kansas  City,  Mo.,  Journal, 
May  12,  1888,  she  fixed  the  date  of  her  birth  as  April  7,  1820, 
"in  Pennsylvania."  That  she  lived  at  Chambersburg  there  is 
no  doubt,  for  there  Thomas  Henry  Quantrill  met  and  married 
her,  but  the  circumstances  under  which  she  was  reared,  edu- 

i  Was  in  and  am  goying  To  The  Capital  i  Think  i  Can  Catch  on  to  Some- 
thing There  The  Peopel  is  Verry  kind  to  me  We  have  PLenty  of  friends 
out  here  Every  Body  is  Shaking  hant  With  me  i  have  to  Do  Something 
Before  Spring  Did  You  Eeceive  my  Last  Letter  Dont  Worry  aBout  me  i 
Will  Try  and  have  Money  By  Spring  Texas  is  my  State  to  Live  in  it  is  a 
fine  CLimate  Would  You  Like  to  Live  on  The  Cost  The  Peopel  say  i  Look 
Brave  Like  William  most  all  of  The  Young  Ladies  fall  in  Love  With  me 
BeCause  They  say  i  am  so  hansome  i  Was  at  a  Big  Gathering  Lately  and 
We  had  a  Big  time  They  Preachiate  us  highly  and  Would  Like  verry  much 
to  see  you  i  have  Something  in  View  i  may  make  it  if  so  i  Will  have 
PLenty  of  money  if  i  Win  i  Will  CLise  for  the  Preasant  Bight  soon  and 
tell  me  all  of  The  News  i  Will  Bight  more  the  Next  time  give  my  BespeCts 
to  The  friends  if  There  is  eny 

Yours  as  Ever  an  affectinate  Son 

Thomas  Quantrell  address  at  austin  Tranit  Co  Texas 

By  By  YCT 

13  Memo,  made  by  Scott  on  an  envelope  of  a  letter  of  Ann  Vandersost 
to  him  dated  December  3,  1888.  The  letter  was  an  inquiry  concerning 
Mrs.  Quantrill 's  family,  saying  that  it  was  possible  that  some  relation 
existed  through  the  Clarkes,  which  proved  to  be  not  the  case.  The  letter 
and  envelope  are  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

«4  Her  hair  was  brown  —  a  dark  brown.  The  red  hair  of  the  family 
came  from  the  father.  Thomas  Henry  Quantrill  had  bright  red  hair  —  very 
red.  He  was  a  tall  slim  man,  thin-breasted  and  stoop-shouldered. 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY  33 

cated,  and  was  living  there  are  not  known.1  s  She  said  in  the 
Courier- Journal  interview  already  referred  to,  that  Thomas 
Henry  Quantrill  had  relatives  living  at  Chambersburg,  and  that 
it  was  while  visiting  them  that  he  met  her.  They  had  been 
engaged  for  some  time  before  their  wedding,  starting  for  Canal 
Dover  something  more  than  a  month  later.16 

In  Mrs.  Quantrill's  life  at  Canal  Dover  there  was  nothing 
which  is  of  much  interest  to  this  work.  She  was  a  good  house- 
wife. '7  After  the  death  of  her  husband  she  found  it  very  diffi- 

15  Being  left  an  orphan  when  but  six  months  old  she  was  reared  in 

the  family  of  an  Uncle,  Judge  Thompson.  —  Clipping  from 

Democrat,  date  unknown,  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

Judge  Alexander  Thompson  —  Scotch-Irish,  brother  Mrs.  Q. 's  moth. 
Judge  of  Somerset  and  Bedford  Cos.  Mrs.  Q.  fath.  &  Moth,  died  of  epidemic 
when  year  old  had  sict  died  young.  Mrs.  Q.  born  at  Stoyestown,  Pa. 
same  year  as  Queen  Victoria.  —  Memo,  of  W.  W.  Scott,  no  date,  now  in 
the  Collection  of  the  author. 

16  Married  Oct.  11,  1836.     Start  for  Dover  in  Nov.  1836,  and  arrived 
here  in  December.     In  their  own  buggy  overland.     He  had  'contract  [with] 
Louis  L.  Lee  to  do  tin  work.     There  were  a  number  of  Hagerstown  people 
here.     Mrs.  Q.  was  Miss  Caroline  Clark,  of  Chambersburg,  Pa.,  —  20  miles 
of  Hagerstown.     Stop  at  hotel  and  went  to  Housekeeping  in  Tom  West 
house  with  S.  Scott  &  wife.     Thomas  Quantrill's  mother  was  of  a  wealthy 
German  family  near  Hagerstown,  named  Heiser.     His  father  was  probably 
of  French  descent.  —  Memo,  of  W.  W.  Scott,  no  date,  now  in  the  Collection 
of  the  author. 

The  Quant,  family  all  went  to  Washington  [from  Hagerstown]. 
Quant,  claimed  [to]  be  of  English  descent.  —  old  Thos.  Quant. 

Quant's  sister  married  John  D.  Otto.  Mary  Ann  —  bad.  Sister 
Eliza.  Cornelia  visit  Dover.  Cornelia  married  Earnshaw,  Harper's  Ferry; 
buried  Wash't.  City. 

Thomas  Heiser  Q.  Bro.  Archie,  Jesse  oldest.  Archibald  Gov't  Printer, 
married  twice,  2  boys  Thos.  Joe.  Mary  Ann,  1st  wife;  3  girls  by  2nd  wife. 
Archibald's  2nd  wife  was  a  Miss  Sands,  a  cousin  of  his  first  wife, 
who  was  Miss  Mary  

Old  man  Thos.  Quantrill  was  1812  soldier  —  thinks  Capt.  Claimed 
[to]  be  of  English  descent.  Born  Hagerstown,  Md.  &  probably  a  black- 
smith. His  sons  were  Jesse  Q.  and  Thomas  Heiser  Q.  Latter  came  to 
Dover  to  work  for  Louis  L.  Lee,  who  had  been  a  schoolmate  at  Hagerstown. 
The  father  had  married  Miss  Judy  Heiser,  daughter  in  a  prominent  German 
family.  Thomas  H.  Quantrill  had  learned  the  tinning  business  at  Cham- 
bersburg, Pa.,  with  his  cousin,  William  Heiser.  There  he  became  acquainted 
with  a  young  lady  named  Caroline  Clark,  and  they  were  married  in  1836 

—  about.  She  was  born  at  ,  Pa.,  and  her  parents  both 

dying  of  some  epidemic  when  quite  young,  she  was  taken  to  live  with  her 
uncle,  Judge  Thompson,  of  Chambersburg.  Drove  out  to  Dover  with  their 
own  horse  and  buggy  in  7  days;  1836. 

Mrs.  Quantrill  told  me  foregoing  on  train  betw.  Cincin.  &  Louisville 
Dec.  87.  —  Memo,  of  W.  W.  Scott,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

1 7  Mrs.  Quantrill  was  a  good  cook  and  housekeeper,  and  that  to  get 
his  victuals  properly  cooked  seemed  about  all  Thomas  H.  Quantrill  cared 


34  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

cult  to  support  herself  and  her  children.  On  this  account  she 
pushed  her  eldest  son  out  into  the  world  hoping  that  he  would 
meet  with  success  which  would  better  the  condition  of  all.  Her 
temperament  was  brooding  and  full  of  jealousy  and  malice,  and 
the  hardships  which  fell  upon  her  had  already  embittered  her 
life  before  she  was  familiar  with  the  criminal  career  of  her  son 
in  the  West.  His  leaving  home  was  in  effect  an  abandonment 
of  his  mother.  He  wrote  occasional  letters  to  her  for  two  or 
three  years,  but  he  never  sent  her  a  cent  of  money  in  his  life. 
At  his  death  he  left  his  money  to  be  applied  to  the  erection  of 
a  monument  to  himself,  and  to  a  former  mistress  with  which 
to  start  a  house  of  ill  fame  hi  St.  Louis  —  left  nothing  to  his 
mother.  She  never  heard  from  him  after  the  Civil  War  began, 
except  indirectly  through  the  newspapers.  ' '  I  never  knew  such 
unbounded  surprise, ' '  she  said,  ' '  as  when  I  began  to  hear  of  his 
war  exploits.  I  received  full  accounts,  the  Ohio  people  who 
knew  me  as  his  mother  never  failing  to  send  me  Northern 
papers  with  their  accounts  of  what  my  son  William  had  done." 
This  statement  cannot  be  reconciled  with  others  she  made  on 
the  subject.  She  was  familiar  with  the  scalawag  character  of 
some  of  the  Quantrills,  and  perhaps  she  pretended  to  believe 
the  deeds  committed  by  her  son  were  those  of  some  of  his  rela- 
tives.18 

Some  time  after  the  war  W.  W.  Scott,  of  Canal  Dover,  a 
schoolmate,  began  to  investigate  the  career  of  W.  C.  Quantrill. 
Inquiry  of  the  people  at  Paola,  Kansas,  with  whom  he  had  left 
Canal  Dover  and  gone  West,  soon  convinced  him  of  the  true 
identity  of  the  guerrilla  chieftain.  It  was  the  evidence  which 
he  obtained  there  which  convinced  Mrs.  Quantrill.  When  sure 
that  the  guerrilla  was  her  son  she  wished  to  visit  the  place  where 
he  had  been  killed  and  see  the  people  who  knew  him  in  his  last 

for.  Mrs.  Quantrill  had  brown  hair  —  not  red  or  auburn  hair.  She  was 
of  a  solitary  turn,  of  a  brooding  disposition,  never  going  to  visit  her  neigh- 
bors, but  sometimes  attending  the  Presbyterian  church.  —  Statement  of 
Mrs.  Frances  Beeson  Thompson  to  author,  August  30,  1907,  now  in  the 
Collection  of  the  author. 

1 8  His  mother  never  heard  of  him  after  the  war  began  and  gave  him 
up  for  dead.  She  could  not  believe,  or  at  least  would  not  believe,  that  the 
infamous  guerilla  was  her  son.  Not  until  1887  would  she  accept  the  truth, 
and  then  the  proof  of  it  was  convincing.  —  Truth,  October  17,  1898 ;  clip- 
ping in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY 


35 


days.  She  went  to  Nelson  and  Spencer  counties  in  Kentucky, 
and  visited  the  people  there  with  whom  he  had  stopped  while 
a  bushwhacker  in  the  state,  also  some  of  those  who  served  under 
him.19  In  that  atmosphere  she  was  soon  proud  of  the  course 

19  The  trip  was  made  with  W.  W.  Scott.  Scott  made  two  trips  to 
Louisville  to  investigate  the  death  of  Quantrill,  and  Mrs.  Quantrill  accom- 
panied him  on  the  second.  The  following  notes  were  made  by  Scott  in 
reference  to  his  first  trip: 

Found  grave  of  W.  C.  Quantrill  on  this  visit,  and  the  entry  of  death 
in  the  Portland  Cemetery  (Catholic)  Louisville,  Ky.  Talked  with  Mr. 
Scally,  the  sexton,  and  Bridget  Scally  his  wife.  Both  were  there  when 
Quantrill  was  buried;  with  10  steps  of  the  Cemetery  lodge,  where  they 
lived.  Rev.  Powers  ordered  that  no  mound  be  raised  over  the  grave,  but 
that  the  ground  be  kept  level,  and  that  they  should  throw  their  dish-water 
and  other  slops  over  the  spot,  so  as  to  obliterate  it  as  much  as  possible  to 
keep  the  body  from  being  stolen.  Quantrill  had  given  Powers  $800  in 
gold  and  directed  his  burial.  —  Memo,  of  W.  W.  Scott,  no  date,  now  in  the 
Collection  of  the  author. 

Scott  left  a  full  account  of  his  doings  at  Louisville  on  his  second  trip, 
and  it  is  here  set  out: 

On  Wednesday  Dec.  7,  1887,  I  visited  the  St.  Johns  Catholic  Cemetery 
(formerly  called  Portland),  Louisville,  Ky.,  and  called  on  Mrs.  Bridget 
Scally,  the  widow  in  charge.  I  had  called  on  herself  and  husband  in  the 
spring  of  1884,  when  I  was  trying  to  find  out  what  had  become  of  the 
body  of  Wm.  Clark  Quantrill  (the  guerrilla),  who  died  in  Louisville,  June 
6,  '65.  Her  husband  was  then  confined  to  his  bed,  but  both  told  me  that 
they  were  present  when  the  body  was  buried;  had  been  in  charge  of  the 
cemetery  all  the  time,  and  Mrs.  Scally  pointed  out  to  me  the  spot;  although 
there  were  no  signs  of  a  grave. 

At  this  second  call  I  found  the  husband  had  died,  but  Mrs.  Scally 
was  still  in  charge.  I  told  her  that  now  I  had  Mrs.  Quantrill  with  me  in 
the  city,  that  she  was  anxious  to  see  the  grave  and  to  talk  with  her  about 
her  son;  and  that  if  she  could  not  remove  the  bones  and  place  them  in  the 
family  cemetery  in  Ohio,  she  would  like  to  have  them  taken  up  and 
placed  in  a  zinc  lined  box. 

I  took  Mrs.  Q.  out  from  the  hotel,  and  herself  and  Mrs.  Scally  talked 
matters  over,  and  Mrs.  Scally  agreed  that  the  grave  might  be  opened  so 
Mrs.  Q.  could  see  condition  of  affairs.  Next  day,  Thursday,  Dec.  8,  1887, 

««~»— ^_ ^_ — —>     I  went  out  after  dinner  and  had 

&gr^-^i'ii«-,n"irmr     n    •'  "*"  I     grave    opened.     It    was   a    cloudy, 

drizzly  day  and  uncomfortable,  and 
Louis  Wertz,  the  employe,  did  not 
like  to  do  the  work,  but  I  gave 
Mrs.  Scally  $2.50  for  the  privilege, 
and  Wertz  a  dollar  extra.  It  was 
3  p.  m.  Mrs.  Scally  pointed  out 
the  place,  and  by  spading  around 
a  little,  the  outlines  were  soon 
found,  and  the  bones  were  reached 
in  an  hour.  They  lay  in  natural 


Bone*  of  Quantrill's  Right  Arm  now  in  Collection 
of  author 


position,  except  top   of  skull  was 
uppermost,    instead    of    lying    on 
back  part.     Every  vestige  of  coffin  had  disappeared  except  a  rotten  piece 


36  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BOEDER  WARS 

pursued  by  her  son  and  came  to  believe  him  a  hero  and  patriot. 
She  remained  with  Captain  A.  D.  Pence,  sheriff  of  Nelson 
county,  and  his  wife,  all  winter.  But  she  made  short  sojourns 
with  other  men  who  had  been  in  her  son's  command.  At  first 
the  people  made  quite  a  great-to-do  over  her,  but  in  a  few 
weeks  their  enthusiasm  cooled.  She  settled  down  to  the  role 
of  a  heroine  and  expected  due  reverence,  and  the  people  had  to 
show  that  they  hoped  she  would  soon  move  on.  She  wrote  to 
Scott  that  Captain  Pence  seemed  to  have  lost  interest  in  her 
business  and  that  the  ladies  would  soon  want  to  clean  house, 
and  urging  him  to  take  her  to  Missouri,  where  she  hoped  for 
a  more  lasting  welcome.20  She  visited  the  Wakefield  farm  where 

size  of  a  man's  hand.  His  hair  had  slipped  off  in  a  half  circle  around  the 
skull,  and  was  of  a  bleached  yellow  color.  A  small  part  of  a  Government 
army  sock  was  about  the  foot  bones;  and  some  shirt-buttons  were  found. 
A  part  of  the  backbone  and  ribs  were  so  decayed  that  they  crumbled  to 
pieces,  but  most  of  the  other  bones  were  in  a  fair  state  of  preservation. 

As  Mrs.  Quantrill  could  not  come  out  on  account  of  weather,  I  had 
the  bones  put  in  a  small  box  and  put  back  in  the  grave,  near  top,  and 
covered  over,  and  by  permission  of  Mrs.  Scally  took  the  skull  wrapped  in 
newspaper  with  me  to  hotel  to  show  Mrs.  Q.  Next  morning  I  showed  it  to 
Mrs.  Q.,  and  she  was  much  affected;  and  she  identified  a  previously 
described  chipped  side  tooth  in  lower  jaw  on  right  side.  She  would  not 
consent  to  having  skull  taken  back;  as  she  must  have  it  buried  beside  his 
father  and  brothers  in  Ohio;  and  that  she  would  manage  in  some  way  to 
get  the  other  parts  of  the  body. 

So  the  skull  was  carefully  wrapped  and  put  in  a  basket,  and  left  at 

hotel  check  room,  while  I  went  with  her  to  Samuels  Depot,  a  station 

miles  south,  that  she  might  see  Doany  Pence,  Robert  Hall  and  others  of 
her  son's  band.  We  left  same  day  (9th  Dec.)  and  arrived  at  Pence's. 
Mr.  and  Mrs.  Pence  pressed  her  to  remain  the  winter  with  them;  so  she 
prevailed  on  me  to  go  to  Louisville  and  get  remainder  of  bones  on  pretext 
of  having  them  put  in  zinc  box  for  re-burial;  and  that  I  should  take  them 
to  Ohio  and  bury  them  beside  her  husband;  and  that  she  would  see  Mrs. 
Scally  before  she  came  back,  and  smooth  the  matter  over,  and  arrange  for 
the  selling  of  the  cemetery  lot. 

I  did  not  approve  of  the  deception,  but  she  said  that  she  could  not 
go  home  without  his  remains;  and  that  on  account  of  forms  and  proofs, 
and  red  tape,  she  might  not  be  able  to  get  them  at  all;  or  at  least  not 
without  much  trouble. 

I  stopped,  secured  them  and  brought  them  home  and  placed  them 
where  agreed  upon.  Mrs.  Q.  told  me  that  she  called  on  Mrs.  Scally  some 
months  afterward,  and  that  by  putting  all  the  blame  for  the  act  on  me,  she 
finally  reconciled  her;  and  that  she  admitted  that  it  was  perhaps  the  best 
way  to  accomplish  it,  and  with  the  least  notoriety,  and  that  the  ends 
probably  justified  the  means;  but  that  the  secrecy  should  be  maintained 
for  the  good  of  all  concerned.  Mrs.  Q.  afterwards  had  the  lot  sold  and 
received  the  money.  —  Statement  of  W.  W.  Scott,  now  in  the  Collection 
of  the  author. 

20  Her  letters  written  during  her  visit  to  Kentucky  and  Missouri  are 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY  37 

Quantrill  was  mortally  wounded  and  talked  with  the  people  there 
who  knew  him  in  his  last  days  of  crime. 

Scott  consented  to  take  Mrs.  Quantrill  to  Missouri.  On 
May  7,  1888,  she  went  from  Samuels 's  Depot  to  Louisville  to 
meet  Scott,  and  on  the  8th  they  left  Louisville  together  for  Jack- 
son county,  Mo.,  arriving  at  Independence  on  the  10th.  There 
she  was  well  received.  The  old  guerrillas  entertained  her  in 
their  homes  and  furnished  her  with  money.  She  made  ineffect- 
ual efforts  to  secure  some  money  from  a  Mrs.  Cooper,  of  Lee's 
Summit,  alleging  that  Quantrill  had  left  it  with  her.  Mrs. 
Cooper  denounced  her  as  a  fraud  and  paid  over  no  money.  Mrs. 
Quantrill  remained  in  Jackson  county  more  than  a  year  and 
became  so  imbued  with  the  greatness  of  her  son  William  that  she 
regarded  her  former  friends  as  enemies  and  people  of  no  conse- 
quence. Scott,  her  ever  true  friend,  said  she  became  a  "hell- 
cat" in  Missouri.  Her  letters  abuse  him  soundly  and  accuse  him 
of  the  effort  to  connect  himself  with  her  and  her  son  for  the  pur- 
pose of  making  money.  She  denounces  all  "Northern  people" 
for  their  crimes  against  the  South.21 


in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  They  reveal  the  peculiarities  and  treachery 
of  her  nature.  She  harbored  a  bitter  hatred  for  her  grand-daughters,  the 
daughters  of  her  son  Franklin.  She  accuses  them  in  these  letters  of 
spying  upon  her  actions  to  the  extent  of  feloniously  securing  and  opening 
her  letters. 

21  Extracts  from  some  of  the  letters  of  Mrs.  Quantrill  are  given  here. 
They  were  all  written  to  W.  W.  Scott,  Canal  Dover,  from  Independence, 
Mo.,  or  vicinity: 

Independence  Mo.  May  20th  188. 

.  .  .  No  doubt  yo  thought  because  they  were  my  Sons  friends,  they 
were  of  no  account.  But  you  are  much  mistaken  if  you  think  so  for  they 
are  much  respected  here.  I  have  met  many  friends  here,  more  than  I  ever 
expected,  in  fact  every  one  here  is  a  friend  of  my  Dear  lost  son.  Now  I 
dont  care  what  the  foalks  think  or  say  of  me  or  my  lost  Son,  I  know  how 
he  stands  here  with  the  very  best.  ...  By  the  way,  I  saw  the  Lady  who 
sent  me  the  letter  when  at  blue  springs,  she  called  on  me  before  I  had  time 
to  find  her.  She  saw  in  the  papers  that  I  was  in  town.  I  spent  one  day 
with  her  She  told  me  of  the  bad  treatment  she  received  at  the  hands  of 
the  Kansas  Fiends  she  was  burned  out  three  times  &  her  life  in  danger 
every  day.  I  had  no  idea  they  did  treat  Women  as  they  did.  it  was 
perfectly  dreadful,  &  yet  to  hear  the  Union  men  tell  they  never  did  any 
thing  bad.  Oh,  no,  it  was  all  the  South,  they  were  driven  to  do  what 
they  did.  Who  would  not  protect  their  homes  and  friends  They  may  say 
what  they  please  out  there  about  my  son.  he  never  did  as  bad  as  some 
of  Kansas  men  did,  he  alwais  respected  Woman  wherever  he  met  them. 


38  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

But  Mrs.  Quantrill  finally  wore  out  her  welcome  in  Missouri. 
Her  former  enthusiastic  friends  tired  of  her  presence  and  came 
to  regard  her  as  a  mild  sort  of  nuisance,  and,  later,  a  real  active 
nuisance.  She  was  compelled  to  turn  again  to  Scott  and  return 
to  Canal  Dover.  No  Missouri  or  Kentucky  people  ever  wrote 

Blue  Springs  1888  July  1st 

.  .  .  You  say  some  one  has  written  a  long  letter  to  a  St.  Louis 
newspaper  about  me  &  my  Son  &  you,  saying  I  am  not  the  mother  of  Wm 
Quantrill  .  .  .  The  man  who  wrote  that  is  no  friend  nothing  but  a  low- 
lifed  Black  Republican  I  have  no  more  respect  for  that  class  of  people, 
they  are  the  lowest  of  Gods  Creation 

Independence  Mo  Oct  17th  1888. 

.  .  .  You  say  there  are  some  foalks  there  who  dont  like  me,  would 
like  to  have  hard  things  said  of  me,  for  what  reason  I  cannot  tell.  I 
know  there  is  a  dreadful  Low  class  of  people  there  who  delight  in  slandering 
&  telling  Lies,  I  think  if  God  ever  makes  another  Hell  He  aught  to  make  it 
there,  Sink  it  in  the  bottomless  Pit  &  put  all  the  Liars  in  it.  It  would 
not  be  any  too  large  for  all  Dover  liars. 

Independence  Mo  Feb  24th   1889 

.  .  .  Now  I  will  tell  you  something  of  your  Self  The  foalks  in 
These  parts  did  not  have  any  confidence  in  you  from  the  fact  of  your 
being  a  Yankey  Man  They  could  not  depend  on  your  word  They  didn't 
know  but  you  were  a  Son  of  Some  Old  Yankey  hunting  up  something 
to  make  money  out  off.  ...  It  was  you  I  had  reference  to  as  a  Pro- 
fessed friend  who  was  not  true.  ...  I  cannot  understand  what  you  mean 
By  saying  you  were  such  a  great  friend  to  me  in  my  dark  days  when  I 
nieded  one,  and  always  took  my  part  and  defended  me.  I  dont  know  of 
any  very  dark  days  I  ever  had.  ...  You  are  the  chief  one  who  has  been, 
and  is  yet  agitateing  The  whole  buisness.  You  may  as  well  give  up  writing 
History  of  my  Dear  lost  Boy,  for  You  never  will  get  any  Thing  correct, 
no  one  but  His  Men  &  friends  and  Myself  could  get  up  a  coreect  History 
of  him.  His  Men  never  will  Enlighten  The  Yankey s  on  The  Subject.  So 
what  They  gather  up  will  be  mostly  Lies. 

Much  more  could  be  quoted  showing  the  disposition  of  Mrs.  Quantrill 
towards  Scott.  Her  particular  grievance  in  these  letters  was  the  action 
of  Scott  in  furnishing  Eliza  Archard  material  for  an  article  on  Quantrill 
and  his  raid  on  Lawrence.  That  he  gave  her  the  photographs  of  the 
Quantrill  family  was  particularly  aggravating,  and  Mrs.  Quantrill  always 
refers  to  Mrs.  Archard  as  "that  Low-Lifed  woman"  and  "that  nasty 
low-Lifed  Woman."  The  Archard  article  was  written  for  the  American 
Press  Association  and  published  broadcast  August  26,  1888.  Scott  really 
did  Mrs.  Quantrill  a  favor  in  that  matter,  and  his  letter  on  the  subject 
reveals  that  he  was  in  fact  the  partisan  of  Quantrill  and  intended  to 
write  an  account  which  would  conceal  as  much  of  the  bad  as  possible. 
He  induced  the  lady  to  leave  out  of  her  article  everything  which  would 
be  disagreeable  to  Mrs.  Quantrill.  In  his  letter  to  her,  dated  Jan.  29,  1889, 
he  says: 

I  told  you  that  there  was  a  woman  here  to  make  inquiry  about  your 
family;  and  that  she  had  seen  some  people  who  were  not  friendly  to  you; 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY  39 

to  her.  At  Canal  Dover  she  soon  met  with  an  accident  and  suf- 
fered a  fractured  arm  and  shoulder,  becoming  an  object  of  char- 
ity. Scott,  good  man  and  good  friend  that  he  was,  circulated  a 
subscription  paper  and  secured  $120  for  her.23 

In  March,  1898,  through  the  efforts  of  Scott,  the  Confed- 
erate Veteran  Association  of  Kentucky  appropriated  funds  for 

and  had  written  up  a  lot  of  stuff  they  had  told  her.  I  told  her  that 
if  she  would  not  publish  that  stuff,  I  would  let  her  have  a  copy  of  your 
picture  and  Mr.  Quantrill's.  She  agreed,  and  that  is  the  way  she  got  the 
pictures;  and  she  did  not  publish  the  stuff  they  had  told  her. 

In  the  previous  September  Scott  had  written  her  about  this  article, 
saying : 

There  was  a  woman  here  two  or  three  months  ago  hunting  up  some- 
thing, and  some  one  took  her  around  to  different  places.  Some  folks  who 
didn't  like  you,  told  her  some  ugly  things.  I  saw  her  afterwards  and  she 
said  if  I  would  let  her  have  your  picture  and  Mr.  Quantrill's,  she  would 
leave  those  things  out  of  her  article.  I  did  so,  and  she  left  them  out. 
There  are  people  here  yet  who  would  like  to  see  all  the  bad  published  that 
they  could.  You  know  very  well  that  I  have  always  tried  to  show  up  for 
the  good  side  of  his  [W.  C.  Quantrill's]  life,  and  make  things  as  smooth 
for  you  as  I  could. 

This  letter  is  valuable  as  showing  that  Scott  was  intending  to  write 
as  favorably  of  Quantrill  as  he  possibly  could. 

The  "dark  days"  letter  to  which  Mrs.  Quantrill  referred  was  dated 
Feb.  6,  1889,  and  the  following  extract  is  taken  from  it: 

Mrs.  Quantrill,  I  dont  see  why  you  have  written  me  one  or  two  such 
letters  as  you  have  since  I  left  you.  I  had  been  your  friend  in  many  dark 
days  when  you  needed  one;  and  I  always  took  your  part  and  defended 
you.  After  I  came  home,  you  wrote  me  a  very  unkind  letter,  accusing  me 
of  having  photographed  the  men  at  Blue  Springs,  and  sending  the  photo- 
graphs to  the  Police  Gazette  to  be  ridiculed.  I  wrote  you  back  at  once 
that  I  had  not  one  of  their  photographs!  had  not  taken  any,  and  had  never 
written  a  line  to  the  Police  Gazette  or  any  other  paper;  and  to  prove  it 
all,  I  got  a  copy  of  the  Police  Gazette  and  sent  it  to  you.  I  thought  that 
would  convince  you  that  you  was  mistaken,  but  you  never  answered  the 
letter. 

When  that  woman  came  here  to  write  a  piece  about  your  son,  she 
went  to  several  parties  and  got  all  the  news  she  could.  Finally  she  came 
to  me,  and  I  found  that  somebody  had  told  her  things  that  would  make  you 
feel  bad  to  see  in  print;  told  to  her  likely  by  some  enemy  of  yours.  I 
made  a  special  request  of  her  to  leave  those  things  out;  and  I  told  her  as 
good  and  as  straight  a  narrative  as  I  could. 

Notwithstanding  her  course  toward  him,  Scott  continued  to  be  her 
staunch  friend  to  the  end  of  his  life.  He  got  her  into  "Homes"  and 
''Hospitals"  and  furnished  her  clothing.  She  was  not  backward  in  ask- 
ing that  he  provide  for  her,  as  her  letters  show. 

22  This  paper  with  the  names  of  the  subscribers  and  the  amount  each 
paid  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 


40  QUANTEILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

the  maintenance  of  Mrs.  Quantrill  in  the  ' '  Home  for  the  Friend- 
less" in  Lexington,  Kentucky.2^ 

Mrs.  Quantrill  remained  in  the  "Home"  some  months,  when 
she  became  dissatisfied  and  returned  to  Canal  Dover.  She  was 
very  quarrelsome  and  disagreeable  as  her  years  increased.  "When 
she  returned  from  Lexington  she  was  placed  in  the  Tuscarawas 
County  Infirmary  (Poorhouse)  and  became  a  public  charge. 
Her  husband  had  been  a  member  of  the  order  of  Odd  Fellows 
in  Canal  Dover.  This  fact,  long  forgotten,  was  established  by 
Scott.  He  secured  her  admission  to  the  Odd  Fellows  Home  at 
Springfield,  Ohio.  Her  letters  from  that  institution  to  Scott, 
almost  illegible,  are  full  of  gratitude.  She  sometimes  wrote  him 
for  money,  the  receipt  of  which  from  him  she  acknowledges. 
She  depended  upon  him  for  a  part  of  her  clothing,  which  he 
furnished.  She  died  at  the  Odd  Fellows  Home,  Springfield,  in 
the  year  1903. 

The  Quantrills  exhibit  the  usual  characteristics  of  a  family 
deficient  in  sound  moral  fiber  developing  in  a  community  where 
there  is  little  restraint  of  personal  inclinations  and  where  con- 
demnation by  public  conscience  is  fitful  and  feeble.  Under  such 
circumstances  society  is  prone  to  leniency  and  forgiveness.  There 
were,  perhaps,  patriotism  and  manliness  of  character  in  Captain 
Thomas  Quantrill,  though  he  became  a  professional  gambler.  His 
son,  Thomas  Henry  Quantrill,  loved  and  labored  to  support  his 
wife  and  children,  though  none  too  scrupulous  as  to  where  he 
obtained  the  money  for  his  enterprises.  His  last  years  show  no 
false  steps.  He  should  not  be  held  to  account  for  the  actions  of 
his  brothers.  But  the  loose  threads  and  slack  twist  of  his 
moral  man  begot  in  his  son  the  seed-ground  for  tares  which 

23  It  has  always  appeared  in  the  newspapers  that  she  was  in  a  Con- 
federate Home  in  Kentucky,  but  the  correspondence  leading  to  her  going  to 
Lexington  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  and  it  clearly  shows  that  she 
was  placed  in  the  Home  for  the  Friendless.  She  made  various  statements 
as  to  why  she  did  not  remain  there,  one  being  that  her  "benefactor"  had 
lost  his  fortune  and  could  no  longer  maintain  her  in  the  Home.  This 
"Home"  seems  to  have  been  called  "St.  Joseph's  Hospital."  In  the 
Morning  Herald,  Lexington,  Ky.,  March  27,  1898,  is  the  following: 

The  bringing  of  Mrs.  Caroline  Clark  Quantrill  to  St.  Joseph's  Hos- 
pital in  this  city  last  week,"  etc.,  etc.  The  clipping  from  the  Herald  is 
in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 


THE  QUANTRILL  FAMILY  41 

kindled  a  conflagration  on  the  border  and  drenched  a  land  in 
blood.  The  broadest  possible  mantle  of  charity  should  enfold  the 
memory  of  Mrs.  Caroline  Clarke  Quantrill.  She  comes  upon  the 
stage  a  mother  true  to  her  offspring  —  with  a  love  for  him  that 
was  stronger  than  death.  She  seeks  to  shield  and  defend  a  child. 
This  quality,  instinct,  in  the  mother  is  the  hope  of  civilization. 
But  the  union  of  this  couple  produced  him  that  shed  blood  like 
water,  a  fiend  wasteful  and  reckless  of  human  life.  They  endowed 
him  with  depravity,  bestowed  upon  him  the  portion  of  degen- 
eracy. In  cruelty  and  a  thirst  for  blood  he  towered  above  the 
men  of  his  time.  Somewhere  of  old  his  ancestors  ate  the  sour 
grapes  which  set  his  teeth  on  edge.  In  him  was  exemplified  the 
terrible  and  immutable  law  of  heredity.  He  grew  into  the  gory 
monster  whose  baleful  shadow  falls  upon  all  who  share  the  kin- 
dred blood.  He  made  his  name  a  Cain's  mark  and  a  curse  to 
those  condemned  to  bear  it.  The  blight  of  it  must  fall  upon 
remote  generations,  those  yet  unborn  and  innocent,  so  inex- 
orable are  the  decrees  of  fate  and  nature.  Because  of  him  wid- 
ows wailed,  orphans  cried,  maidens  wept,  as  they  lifted  the  life- 
less forms  of  loved  ones  from  bloody  fields  and  bore  them  reeking 
to  untimely  graves. 


CHAPTER  II 

EABLY  LIFE  OP   QUANTRILL 

WILLIAM  Clarke  Quantrill  was  born  at  Canal  Dover, 
Ohio,  July  31,  1837.'  Of  his  childhood  very  little- 
is  known.  But  something  of  his  school-boy  life  has 
come  down  to  us.  He  had  few  friends,  for  there  was  little  in  com- 
mon between  him  and  other  boys  of  his  age.  He  was  solitary, 
wandering  in  the  woods  with  firearms  when  quite  young.  There 
he  shot  small  game  and  maimed  domestic  animals  for  amuse- 
ment.3 He  would  often  nail  a  snake  to  a  tree  and  let  it  remain 
there  in  torture  until  it  died.  He  carried  small  snakes  in  his 
pockets,  and  these  he  would  throw  on  his  sister  and  other  girls 
at  school  and  laugh  heartily  at  their  terror.  He  would  stick  a 
knife  into  a  cow  by  the  roadside,  or  stab  a  horse.  He  often  tor- 
tured dogs  and  cats  to  enjoy  their  cries  of  distress.  Pain  in 
any  other  person  or  in  any  animal  gave  him  pleasure,  delight.s 
He  was  an  expert  in  the  use  of  the  rifle  and  could  throw  stones 

1  It  is  believed  necessary  to  make  this  fact  prominent,  and  it  is  re- 
peated here. 

2  There  was  nothing  about  him  to  indicate  his  subsequent  career,  ex- 
cept that  he  would  occasionally  shoot  a  pig  through  the  tip  of  the  ear  to 
make  it  run  and  squeal,  and  then  would  laugh  immoderately  at  its  antics. 
Such  things  in  illiterate  persons  might  be  attributed  to  thoughtlessness; 
but  in  a  young  man  of  his  intelligence  it  looked  like  a  vein  of  cruelty. 
In  no  other  way  did  he  ever  exhibit  an  evil  disposition.     He  was  strictly 
temperate   and   honest. — W.   W.   Scott,   in  Joplin,   Mo.,   Morning   Herald, 
April  89,  1881.     Clipping  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

Mr.  Scott  was  the  friend  of  Quantrill  and  his  family,  and  it  was  his 
avowed  intention  to  rescue  his  name  from  infamy.  Attention  is  called  to 
many  of  the  expressions  of  Mr.  Scott  quoted  in  this  work.  They  establish 
this  friendship  and  this  intention.  Many  other  forms  of  cruelty  practiced 
by  Quantrill  in  his  boyhood  are  known,  and  they  indicate  a  depraved 
nature. 

3  This  information  was  secured  from  a  number  of  persons  who  knew 
Quantrill  as  a  school-bey,   among  them,  members  of  the  Beeson  family. 
There  is  some  evidence  that  Franklin  Quantrill  did  the  same  things,  chasing 
cows  on  his  crutches  to  stab  them. 


EARLY  LIFE  OF  QUANTRILL  43 

with  much  force  and  velocity  and  with  unerring  accuracy.  He 
was  not  of  a  contentious  turn  and  seldom  quarreled.  Conscious- 
ness of  some  guilt  seemed  ever  present  with  him,  causing  a  sort 
of  hang-dog  expression  of  countenance  and  an  inclination  to 
avoid  a  conflict,  but  when  forced  to  battle  he  fought  desperately 
with  any  thing  he  could  lay  hands  upon. 

Quantrill  was  a  strong  boy,  but  never  robust.  He  suffered 
from  a  throat  trouble  which  was  expected  to  develop  consump- 
tion, a  family  malady  of  which  his  father  died.  He  suffered  a 
rupture  when  very  young,  but  this  never  became  a  serious  mat- 
ter with  him.  His  face  was  round  and  full,  with  piercing  blue- 
grey  eyes  of  a  strange  tint,  the  upper  lids  of  which  fell  too  low, 
imparting  a  peculiar  expression  which  became  very  marked  when 
he  was  in  a  rage.  His  forehead  was  high,  his  hair  almost  white 
(of  the  "tow-head"  variety),  and  his  nose  was  curved  and  sin- 
ister. His  appearance  as  a  whole  indicated  strong  individuality. 
With  some  people  he  was  in  great  good  repute,  while  others 
despised  him  from  first  sight  without  being  able  to  explain  why. 
He  was  the  favorite  of  his  mother,  no  other  child  ever  finding 
the  place  in  her  heart  which  she  gave  her  first-born.  She  was 
his  champion  when  he  was  confronted  with  the  consequences  of 
his  evil-doing,  always  bringing  him  off  without  punishment  if 
possible.  There  was  no  love  between  Quantrill  and  his  father. 

As  an  instance  of  the  depravity  of  Quantrill  even  as  a  boy, 
the  following  circumstance  is  related.  In  Canal  Dover  the 
Catholic  church  stood  apart  from  the  village,  and  the  public  road 
ran  by  its  door.  The  pasture  for  town-cows  lay  beyond,  and 
Quantrill  drove  the  family-cow  to  and  from  it.  Once  the  priest 
was  called  away  upon  emergency  and  left  the  housekeeper,  a 
girl  in  her  teens,  alone.  She  went  up  into  the  belfry  to  ring 
the  evening  chimes.  This  belfry  was  ascended  by  steep  and 
winding  stairs.  It  was  entered  through  a  door  with  a  heavy 
shutter  which  was  secured  by  an  enormous  lock  turned  with  a 
ponderous  iron  key.  Passing  with  the  cow,  Quantrill  saw  the 
belfry  door  standing  open,  and,  hearing  the  clanging  of  the  bell, 
he  knew  the  girl  was  aloft  there  and  alone.  He  quietly  closed 
and  locked  the  door,  and,  taking  the  key,  he  went  on  and  threw 
it  into  the  deep  water  of  Sugar  creek.  The  girl  was  kept  a  pris- 


44  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BOEDER  WARS 

oner  in  the  belfry  nearly  twenty-four  hours  without  food  or 
water.  When  released  she  was  prostrated  from  fright  and  want, 
and  so  indignant  were  the  members  of  the  church  that  they 
offered  a  reward  of  one  hundred  dollars  for  the  apprehension 
of  the  criminal.* 

In  school  Quantrill  was  a  bright  pupil.  But  he  gave  the 
teacher  much  trouble,  especially  his  father  when  the  latter  was 
principal  of  the  Union  School.  He  had  to  be  punished  often. 
One  day  his  father  took  him  out  and  whipped  him  soundly.  A 
young  lady  s  saw  him  return  to  the  room,  pale,  tearless,  trem- 
bling, and  with  the  look  of  a  demon.  There  was  murder  in  every 
gleam  of  his  strange  glittering  eyes. 

At  the  age  of  sixteen  Quantrill  was  employed  as  a  teacher 
in  the  Union  School  at  Canal  Dover.  Why  he  was  not  retained 
in  that  position  is  not  known.  It  would  seem  that  if  he  had 
given  satisfaction  or  had  been  regarded  as  a  person  suitable  for 
the  place  he  should  have  been  allowed  to  remain  after  his  father's 
death,  his  mother  being  a  widow  with  a  large  family  to  support. 
But  the  winter  of  his  father's  death  (1854-55)  he  taught  a  coun- 
try school  in  Tuscarawas  county,  not  far  from  Canal  Dover. 

From  the  age  of  eighteen  years  there  is  some  record  of  Quan- 
trill and  his  actions.  In  1855  he  first  ventured  into  the  world 
to  try  his  powers  and  seek  his  fortune.  The  Clapp  family,  an 
old  and  respected  one  at  Canal  Dover,  moved  to  La  Salle  county, 
Illinois.  Miss  Mary  Clapp  was  a  teacher  in  the  Canal  Dover 


4  Quantrill  did  not  admit  this  crime  until  after  he  came  to  Kansas. 
There,  when  the  Beeson  and  Torrey  children  met  to  play,  they  talked  of  the 
old  home  at  Canal  Dover,  often  expressing  a  strong  desire  to  return  and 
sometimes  weeping  because  they  could  not  go.  One  Sunday  afternoon 
these  young  people  were  strolling  along  the  banks  of  the  Marais  des  Cygnes, 
one  of  the  young  ladies  in  tears  from  memories  of  the  old  Ohio  home. 
Quantrill  was  one  of  the  party  and  asked  her  why  she  did  not  return.  She 
said  she  had  no  money  and  that  she  could  not  return  since  her  family  then 
lived  in  Kansas.  "I  can  tell  you  how  to  get  the  money,"  he  said.  "I 
locked  the  Catholic  belfry,  and  if  you  will  inform  the  church  you  can  get 
the  one  hundred  dollars  reward  offered  for  the  person  who  did  it.  I  locked 
the  door  and  threw  the  key  into  deep  water  in  Sugar  Creek. ' '  He  laughed 
immoderately  at  the  thought  of  his  heartless  act  and  seemed  to  think  it  a 
fine  joke. 

s  Now  Mrs.  Frances  Beeson  Thompson,  of  Topeka. 


EARLY  LIFE  OF  QUANTRILL  45 

Union  School.6  In  the  summer  of  1855  she  went  to  Mendota, 
Illinois,  and  Mrs.  Quantrill  prevailed  upon  her  to  allow  her  son 
William  to  go  along.  Some  account  of  the  journey  and  of  Quan- 
trill 's  impression  of  that  country,  as  well  as  of  his  employment 
there,  can  be  found  in  the  following  letter  written  by  him  to 
his  mother.  7 

Wednesday  August  8th  1855 
Mendota  La  Salle  Co 

Illinois 
Dear  Mother. 

I  arrived  here  about  half  past  two  o.clock  this  afternoon  safe 
&  sound.  My  box  is  not  here  but  I  expect  it  tomorrow.  We 
traveled  day  &  night  ever  since  we  started  not  having  stopped 
half  an  hour  at  one  place.  Tomorrow  I  am  going  to  hunt  some- 
thing to  do.  We  are  both  well  except  that  Mary  was  looking 
out  of  the  window  of  the  car  while  we  were  going  along  the  shore 
of  Lake  Michigan  when  a  spark  of  fire  flew  in  her  eye  &  made 
it  a  little  sore.  But  that  will  be  well  in  a  day  or  so.  We  did  not 
have  any  trouble  with  our  trunks  at  all.  I  have  $6  of  my  money 
left  &  maybe  the  next  time  I  write  I  will  send  a  little  along.  I 
am  about  600  miles  from  home. 

This  country  is  a  great  deal  different  from  Ohio  for  miles 
around  I  can  see  nothing  but  tall  grass.  There  is  not  much 
Fruit  here  although  I  have  seen  ripe  peaches  at  the  cars  for  sale : 
but  corn,  potatoes,  cabbage  are  plenty.  We  have  stopped  at 
Marys  Aunts  Mrs  Cross  but  I  wont  stay  here  but  a  day  or  so. 
There  are  two  schools  here  probably  I  can  get  one  of  them. 
Well  I  believe  that  is  all  this  time  the  next  time  I  will  write 
more 

Yours  With  Respect 

William  Quantrill 
P.  S.     Direct  to  me  Mendota  La  Salle  Co  Illinois 

A  manly  letter,  and  it  arouses  sympathy !  Those  who  have; 
stood  alone  and  friendless  for  the  first  time  on  a  strange  shore 
will  find  only  indications  of  honesty  of  purpose  in  it.  If  only 
some  good  influence  could  have  taken  possession  of  him  then 

6  See  page  98,  Reminiscences  of  Dover,  by  William  W.  Scott,  Canal 
Dover,  Ohio,  1879.     Miss  Clapp  was  a  teacher  in  the  winters  of  1852-53 
and  1853-54.     There  it  is  said:     "Miss  Clapp  married  a  prominent  Illinois 
farmer,  and  lives  at  Mendota. ' '     William  C.  Quantrill  was  employed  in  the 
winter  of  1853-54,  his  father  dying  the  following  December. 

7  Letter  of  W.  C.  Quantrill  to  his  mother,  now  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author. 


46     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

and  there  the  latent  powers  of  his  character  for  evil  might  never 
have  developed.  If  some  sympathetic  hand  had  been  extended 
from  the  coldness  and  strangeness  of  his  new  world  this  boy 
might  have  anchored  at  last  in  a  haven  of  honor  and  respect! 
But  the  world  is  cold,  indifferent.  A  little  kindness  might  often 
change  the  destiny  of  a  soul! 

On  the  18th  of  September  Quantrill  wrote  a  letter  to  his 
mother  in  answer  to  one  he  had  received  from  her.  This  letter 
is  as  follows :  8 

Mendota  Sept  18th  1855 
Dear  Mother. 

I  received  your  letter  yesterday  &  was  very  glad  to  hear  that 
you  are  well  &  I  am  glad  to  tell  you  that  I  am  the  same.  Well 
I  guess  I  will  teach  school  this  winter,  but  I  was  very  sorry  to 
hear  that  you  could  not  .find  those  Texas  papers  but  I  want  you 
to  look  again  for  them  for  if  you  find  them  I  can  make  some 
money  this  winter.  I  wrote  you  a  letter  before  I  received  your 
last  one  I  suppose  you  have  got  it  by  this  time  you  must  be 
sure  to  send  me  those  tinners  books  all  of  them  as  soon  as  you 
can  for  those  six  that  I  brought  with  me  I  sold  in  one  town  & 
I  could  of  sold  more  if  I  had  them  for  $2.00  a  piece  which  just 
paid  my  board,  be  sure  &  send  them  for  I  can  sell  50  in  Chicago 
there  are  so  many  tin  shops  there.  If  you  send  them  I  can  send 
you  some  money  in  a  week  I  have  only  $8  dollars  now.  As  soon 
as  you  send  them  books  in  a  week  I  will  send  you  $20  certain,  be 
sure  to  send  them  by  express  You  had  better  try  to  borrow  a  lit- 
tle money  of  Dr.  Brashear  or  Dr.  Winnul  until  I  can  get  those 
books,  for  you  know  I  wont  get  my  pay  for  teaching  only  every 
three  months.  I  get  $25  a  month  &  boarded.  I  would  like  to 
have  those  texas  papers  very  much.  You  had  better  write  to 
Grandfather  &  ask  him  if  he  has  got  them  &  tell  him  I  can  do 
well  with  them.  And  I  would  ask  him  to  help  me  a  little.  I 
think  I  shall  write  to  him  for  I  guess  he  dont  know  I  am  out 
here,  well  I  must  bring  my  letter  to  a  close  dont  forget  those 
books.  Send  them  by  express. 

Yours  With  Respect 

Your  Son 
W.  Quantrill 

I  want  you  to  answer  this  letter  a  little  sooner  if  you  can 
the  man  that  wants  to  get  that  land  in  texas  wants  to  know 
pretty  soon  whether  I  can  get  the  papers  or  not 

8  Letter  of  W.  C.  Quantrill  to  his  mother,  now  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author. 


EARLY  LIFE  OF  QUANTRILL  47 

A  number  of  men  from  Ohio  fought  in  the  Texan  patriot 
army  for  the  independence  of  the  Lone  Star  Republic,  and  the 
Texas  papers  he  requested  may  have  been  a  warrant  for  land 
for  military  service  in  the  patriot  forces.  Some  of  the  roving 
brothers  of  his  father  may  have  served  in  the  Texan  army.  One 
of  them,  or  an  uncle,  was  a  pirate  on  the  Texan  coast,  and  he  may 
have  lived  to  cast  his  lot  with  the  Texans.  The  "tinners  books" 
referred  to  were  copies  of  the  work  written  and  published  by  his 
father.  It  is  very  probable  that  his  mother  sent  him  some  of 
them,  but  he  did  not  send  her  any  money.  He  never  sent  her 
a  penny  in  the  world.  This  letter  indicates  that  he  had  gamed 
confidence  in  himself. 

The  next  letter  written  by  Quantrill  was  dated  on  the  2d  of 
October,  and  was  to  Edward  T.  Kellam,  Canal  Dover,  and  is  as 
follows : 9 

Mendota 

Oct  2d  1855 
Friend  Edward. 

I  suppose  you  think  or  had  begun  to,  that  I  had  forgotten 
you  entirely ;  but  not  so,  I  have  threatened  to  write  to  you,  sev- 
eral times,  but  neglected  it.  Well  I  will  attend  to  it  a  little  bet- 
ter if  you  answer  this  one. 

I  live  about  80  miles  south  of  Chicago  in  a  little  town  by  the 
name  of  Mendota.  It  is  scarcely  two  years  old  &  yet  it  contains 
nearly  1500  inhabitants  The  reason  of  its  rapid  growth,  is,  that 
four  railroads  center  here ;  it  will  be  a  large  place  in  a  few  years 
if  it  continues,  we  have  four  passenger  &  eight  freight  trains 
every  day  &  night,  so  now  you  can  judge  of  the  business  done 
here  it  goes  ahead  of  Dover,  for  we  have  a  paper  printed 
here.  I  want  you  to  send  me  one  of  the  county  papers  once 
[letter  cut  away  here]  our  paper.  [Letter  cut  away  here] 
this  is  the  country  for  farming,  it  beats  Ohio  all  to  pieces.  A 
man  can  raise  a  crop  of  corn  &  wheat  in  one  year  that  will  pay 
for  the  farm  &  all  the  expences  of  fencing  &  ploughing,  that  is 
well  enough  I  think ;  all  the  objection  I  have  to  it,  is,  that  there  is 
not  enough  of  timber  which  makes  wood  very  .high  $5,00  a  cord 
only. 

This  too  is  the  country  for  hunting  &  it  pays  well.  Here 
a  man  that  understands  the  business  can  shoot  from  50  to  60 
prairie  chickens  every  day  &  get  $1.50  per  dozen  [for]  all  he 

9  Letter  of  W.,  C.  Quantrill  to  Edward  T.  Kellam,  now  in  the  Collec- 
tion of  the  author. 


48  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

can  shoot.  There  is  a  place  16  miles  from  here  called  inlet  pond, 
where  there  are  thousands  of  ducks  and  geese.  I  was  up  last 
Saturday  &  I  killed  2  geese  and  11  ducks,  but  the  fellow  that  was 
with  me  killed  9  geese  and  32  ducks,  we  got  50  cts  apiece  for 
the  geese  &  25  cts  for  the  ducks,  if  you  was  here  we  would  go 
every  day.  You  had  better  come  out  here  &  buy  a  farm  you 
cant  do  better  I  know.  I  guess  I  must  bring  my  letter  to  a  close, 
when  you  write  tell  me  the  news  &  the  fun.  Give  my  respects 
to  all  the  boys  and  girls 

[Signature  cut  away] 
when  you  write  address  me. 

Mendota 

La  Salle  Co 

Illinois 

The  signature  of  this  letter  has  been  cut  off,  probably  by  "W. 
W.  Scott  to  send  to  some  newspaper.  This  letter  makes  no  men- 
tion of  his  school,  but  it  tells  us  that  he  had  turned  pot-hunter. 

On  the  17th  of  November  Quantrill  again  wrote  to  his 
mother,  as  follows :  I0 

Nov  17  1855 
My  Dear  Mother. 

I  would  have  written  to  you  before  this  but  I  did  not  get 
that  box  you  sent  me  untill  a  few  days  ago.  I  thought  I  would 
not  write  to  you  untill  I  got  it  for  then  you  would  have  thought 
it  was  lost,  but  I  have  got  it,  and  every  thing  was  safe.  The 
boots  came  a  little  too  late  for  I  had  bought  me  a  pair  about  two 
or  three  weeks  before.  I  will  not  need  them  this  winter  but  I 
will  keep  them  in  my  trunk  so  that  they  will  be  safe.  I  have  not 
had  any  time  yet  to  get  off  to  sell  some  books  but  next  [week]  I 
will  have  a  little  time  &  I  think  the  next  time  I  write  you  may 
expect  some  money  by  express  as  that  is  the  only  safe  way  to 
send  it. 

Well  I  must  tell  you  one  thing  &  that  is  that  I  am  tired 
of  the  west  already,  and  I  do  not  think  I  shall  stay  in  it  very 
much  longer  than  I  can  help;  I  must  stay  as  long  as  my  school 
lasts  &  that  is  all.  You  may  expect  me  home  early  in  the  spring, 
for  I  was  a  dunce  to  go  away  for  I  could  have  done  just  as  well 
at  home  as  out  here  &  then  I  would  have  been  at  home.  I  have 
learned  one  good  lesson  that  I  would  never  have  learned  at  home 
&  when  I  get  there  again  (which  will  not  be  long)  I  will  turn 
over  a  new  leaf  entirely  You  said  the  children  had  the  ague; 
you  must  try  and  cure  them  if  possible  &  this  is  the  last  winter 

10  Letter  of  W.  C.  Quantrill  to  his  mother,  now  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author. 


49 

you  will  ever  have  to  keep  boarders  if  I  keep  my  health.  I  feel 
that  I  have  done  wrong  in  going  from  home  &  hope  you  will  for- 
give me  for  it.  I  must  bring  my  letter  to  a  close. 

Yours  with  respect 
Your  son 

William  C.  Quantrill 

He  had  received  the  books  but  had  sold  none,  he  said.  She 
sent  him  a  pair  of  boots,  though  her  children  were  sick  and  she 
was  keeping  boarders  for  bread!  What  will  a  mother  not  do! 
In  this  letter  a  change  in  Quantrill  is  quite  evident.  He  made 
but  indirect  reference  to  teaching,  and  it  is  possible  that  he  did 
not  teach  at  all.  W.  W.  Scott  says  Quantrill  worked  in  a  lumber 
yard;  also,  that  he  unloaded  lumber  from  cars  at  Mendota  and 
taught  in  the  Mendota  schools  later,  which  he  may  have  done.11 
There  is  evidence  in  the  letter  that  he  was  sliding  rapidly  down 
the  moral  scale,  and  he  wrote  a  promise  to  reform.  He  made  a 
number  of  such  promises  to  his  mother,  none  of  which  he  ever 
kept. 

At  Mendota  there  came  a  crisis  in  the  life  of  Quantrill. 
His  mother  did  not  hear  from  him  after  the  17th  of  November. 
1855,  until  in  February,  1856,  his  letter  bearing  date  of  the  21st 
of  that  month.  It  was  written  from  Fort  Wayne,  Indiana,  and 
is  as  follows: l2 

Ft  Wane,  February  21st  1856 
My  Dear  Mother 

I  suppose  you  thought  I  was  dead  but  not  so,  for  I  had  and 
still  continue  to  have,  better  health  than  I  ever  had  at  home.  I 
suppose  that  you  think  that  something  has  happened  to  me,  and 
you  think  right ;  for  if  it  had  not  been  so  you  would  have  heard 
from  me  before  this.  I  think  I  will  not  tell  you  in  this  letter  what 
it  was  as  this  is  the  first  one  I  have  wrote  you  since  it  happened. 
The  last  letter  I  wrote  you  was  then.  You  will  not  think  so  hard 
of  me  when  you  know  all.  I  hope  you  will  forgive  me  then  for 
not  writing. 

I  am  now  in  Indiana  near  Fort  Wayne  teaching  a  school,  and 
a  very  good  one  I  have.     I  have  from  35  to  40  schollars  every 

I 1  Statement  of  W.  W.  Scott,  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.     See, 
also,  letter  from  Columbus,  Ohio,  to  the  Cincinnati  Times-Star,  by  F.  B. 
Glessner,  in  1886,  exact  date  not  on  clipping  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

"Letter  of  W.  C.  Quantrill  to  his  mother,  now  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author. 


50     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BOEDER  WARS 

day.  I  have  got  in  a  good  neighborhood,  and  they  say  I  am  the 
best  teacher  they  ever  had.  I  get  20  dollars  a  month  and  boarded. 
I  took  up  school  for  three  months  and  my  time  is  half  out  now. 

Well  mother  I  have  concluded  to  come  home  in  the  spring 
when  school  is  out  if  you  are  willing,  not  that  I  have  not  fared 
so  well  since  I  left,  because  I  have  good  clothes,  and  I  have  not 
had  to  miss  one  meals  victuals.  But  this  is  the  reason  why  I 
think  of  coming  home,  it  is  because  I  can  make  just  as  much 
money  there  as  any  place  else,  and  save  a  great  deal  more,  and 
also  I  think  I  done  wrong  in  going  from  home  and  leaving  you 
by  yourself,  and  let  you  earn  your  own  living  I  have  earned 
enough  if  I  had  been  at  home  to  keep  us  all  comfortably  So  in 
the  spring  I  will  come  home  not  to  seek  an  asylum,  but  rather 
to  make  one.  I  suppose  if  Grandfather  is  there  he  has  scolded 
me  completely  but  when  he  knows  all  he  will  think  different. 

One  thing  I  will  tell  you  this  trip  I  have  had  has  done  me 
more  good  and  I  have  learned  more  than  I  would  in  three  years 
steady  schooling.  What  I  have  learned  will  be  of  more  benefit 
to  me  than  any  thing  I  now  know  of  I  would  be  willing  to  stay 
away  another  year,  if  it  was  not  for  you  and  the  children,  if  I 
thought  I  could  be  benefitted  as  much  as  I  have  been  the  few 
months  I  have  been  gone.  I  have  been  studying  book  keeping 
this  winter  and  I  think  I  will  try  that  in  the  spring  if  I  am 
spared  that  long.  I  think  I  can  make  more  money  at  it,  and  it 
will  be  better  for  my  health. 

I  have  found  a  great  many  people  that  I  am  acquainted  with, 
for  instance  two  of  Sam  Fertig's  sisters  live  in  the  district  I  am 
teaching  in.  and  George  Scott  lives  about  20  miles  from  here. 
I  saw  him  once  in  town  he  is  a  different  boy  from  what  he  was 
in  Dover,  he  has  been  making  one  dollar  a  day  and  boarded 
all  winter  and  that  he  never  done  at  home  and  never  would  in 
Dover  if  he  had  lived  there  ever  so  long,  when  my  school  is 
out  I  am  going  to  see  them. 

It  has  been  very  cold  here,  two  weeks  ago  the  snow  in  the 
woods  is  about  30  inches  deep  and  it  bids  fair  to  be  still  deeper. 
Two  weeks  ago  last  Tuesday  the  thermometer  stood  at  30  degrees 
below  zero  at  day  break  and  at  noon  was  19  degrees  below,  both 
Tuesday  and  Wednesday  it  was  the  same  and  for  five  days  it 
did  not  go  above  zero.  I  suppose  it  has  not  been  so  cold  there. 
There  was  one  man  here  had  160  head  of  sheep  froze  in  one 
night  and  most  every  body  had  their  pigs  and  calves  froze,  and 
people  have  had  their  toes  froze  so  bad  that  they  think  they  will 
drop  off.  among  the  rest  I  had  my  toes  and  ears  froze  but  not 
very  bad.  Every  body  here  most  has  got  the  ague,  and  a  great 
many  have  died  with  the  typhoid  fever.  This  country  is  a  low 


EARLY  LIFE  OF  QUANTRILL  51 

flat  swampy  unhealthy  place,  and  covered  with  very  heavy  tim- 
ber, more  than  in  Ohio.  Almost  every  body  lives  in  log  houses 
and  to  take  it  all  around  I  would  not  advise  any  one  to  buy  a 
farm  in  the  state,  for  really  I  would  hardly  live  here  one  year 
for  a  good  farm,  almost  every  body  here  wants  to  sell  out  and 
leave  the  country. 

I  would  just  as  soon  be  at  home  as  any  place  else  for  a 
while.  I  suppose  the  furnace  has  been  going  all  winter  and 
Dover  is  a  little  more  lively  than  it  was.  I  suppose  some  of  the 
boys  have  got  situations  in  it  by  this  time.  Well  mother  I  am 
tedious  I  suppose  with  such  a  long  letter.  Give  my  respects  to 
all  my  friends  &  especially  the  boys  &  tell  them  I  will  write 
soon.  Tell  them  I  am  well  and  doing  well.  The  next  time  I 
will  tell  you  all  about  what  has  happened.  But  I  want  you  to 
never  tell  any  body  else  whoever  it  may  be  for  my  sake.  When 
you  answer  this  direct  to  Fort  Wayne  Indiana. 

I  still  remain  yours  Respectfully 
Your  Son 
William  Quantrill 
Mrs.  Caroline  C.  Quantrill 

There  is  no  certain  knowledge  of  what  "happened"  to 
Quantrill  at  Mendota.  W.  W.  Scott  probably  knew  but  con- 
cealed it.  '3  He  left  a  memorandum  written  on  the  fragment  of 
a  letter-head  of  S.  S.  Scott,  manufacturer  of  the  Scott  Fountain 
Pen,  Chicago.  It  is  the  only  written  evidence  of  what  occurred 
at  Mendota  and  is  as  follows : 

Did  you  ever  know  that  Quantrill  kept  books  for  a  lumber 
firm  in  Ottawa  or  Mendota  111  &  that  while  there  he  shot  & 
killed  a  man  whom  he  said  knocked  him  down  with  the  intention 
of  robbing  him. 

There  is  nothing  whatever  to  show  who  wrote  this.  A  rumor 
that  Quantrill  had  killed  a  man  at  Mendota  reached  Canal  Dover 
in  the  winter  of  1855-56.  Quantrill  seemingly  referred  to  that 
rumor  when  he  said  he  supposed  that  his  grandfather  had  scolded 

13  That  Scott  intended  to  hide  the  bad  in  the  life  of  Quantrill  up  to 
the  time  he  came  to  Kansas,  and  to  put  as  good  a  face  as  possible  on  his 
actions  in  Kansas  and  Missouri  is  evidenced  by  memoranda  left  by  him 
and  which  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  In  all  the  writings  of  Scott 
he  shields  Quantrill  and  refuses  to  believe  that  he  was  bad.  When  forced 
to  admit  that  he  was  bad,  the  treatment  he  received  in  Kansas  made  him 
bad.  Much  to  that  effect  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 


52  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

him  completely.  Rumor  made  two  versions  of  the  affair.  One 
was  to  the  effect  that  Quantrill  was  sleeping  in  the  office  of  the 
lumber  yard  when  attacked  and  that  he  shot  his  assailant  dead. 
Another  version  was,  that  this  killing  was  in  the  day  time  and 
that  Quantrill  was  found  behind  a  pile  of  lumber  standing  over 
a  dead  man  with  a  smoking  pistol  in  his  hand.  The  man  was  a 
stranger.  There  was  no  witness,  and  Quantrill  said  the  man  had 
attempted  to  rob  him.  The  authorities  held  Quantrill  some  time, 
but  as  nothing  could  be  found  to  contradict  him,  and  he  being 
but  a  boy  in  appearance,  he  was  allowed  to  go  free.  There  is 
nothing  positive  to  be  had  on  the  subject,  however.1* 

Whatever  this  crime  (it  could  have  been  nothing  less,  from 
QuantriU's  letter  and  action),  Quantrill  was  a  changed  man 
afterwards.  While  still  hoping  that  he  might  be  forgiven  at 
home,  he  desired  that  nothing  be  said  about  the  matter.  His 
letter  speaking  of  the  occurrence  was  in  a  bold  and  confident 
tone,  indicating  that  he  was  getting  used  to  the  world  and  stood 
in  little  fear  of  it. 

The  next  letter  from  Quantrill  was  dated  at  Fort  Wayne. 
But  a  fragment  of  it  has  been  preserved.  He  evidently  changed 
his  mind  about  returning  home  in  the  spring,  for  the  letter  was 
written  in  July.1* 

Fort  Wayne  July  14/56 
Dear  Mother. 

Well  mother  I  am  going  to  write  one  more  letter  to  you  & 
it  is  the  last  one  untill  I  receive  an  answer  this  is  the  fourth  one 
without  an  answer  yet  &  the  last  one. 

I  am  &  have  been  well  since  I  left  home  with  the  exceptions 
of  a  few  shakes  of  the  ague  3  I  think  I  am  going  to  school  in 
this  city.  I  study  Chemistry,  Physiology  Latin  &  Plane  Trig- 
onometry school  will  be  out  in  3  weeks  I  am  again  going  to 
work  again  probably  in  this  place  but  I  will  teach  again  in  the 
winter  . 


14  Mrs.  Frances  Beeson  Thompson,  now  of  Topeka,  was  living  then 
at  Canal  Dover,  and  she  remembers  these  rumors.    W.  W.  Scott  told  F.  B. 
Glessner  that  "It  is  said  that  he   [Quantrill]  left  his  school  at  Mendota 
in  the  middle  of  the  term  owing  to  some  trouble  or  scandal."    See  a 
previous  note  for  mention  of  Glessner  and  his  article  in  the  Cincinnati 
Times-Star. 

15  Letter  from  W.  C.  Quantrill  to  his  mother,  now  in  the  Collection 
of  the  author. 


EARLY  LIFE  OP  QUANTEILL  53 

He  had  made  up  his  mind  to  remain  at  Fort  Wayne  over 
another  winter,  but  it  is  quite  probable  that  he  returned  home 
shortly  after  the  above  letter  was  written.  The  tendency  to 
sudden  and  unexpected  actions  seemed  to  be  taking  a  hold  on 
him,  and  this  became  characteristic  of  him  in  later  life.  The 
following  winter  he  taught  school  in  the  country,  near  his  native 
town.16 

Mrs.  Frances  Beeson  Thompson  believes  this  last  school  was 
in  a  district  near  Urichsville.  He  left  Ohio  without  paying  his 
board-bill  in  the  district.  Quantrill  left  his  native  land  never  to 
return.  The  inexorable  tide  of  events  swept  him  westward  to  a 
destiny  dark,  infamous.17 

1 6  W.   C.    Quantrill   taught   Dover   Union   School   winter   of    1853-54 
when  16  yrs.  old.     He  afterwards  taught  in  the  Geo.  Riker  district  below 
N.  Philadelphia,  and  also  in  the  Blicktown  Dist.  below  Dover.  —  Memo  of 
W.  W.  Scott,  no  date,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

Quantrill  taught  two  terms  of  school  in  country  districts  in  Tus- 
carawas  county,  Ohio  (his  native  county),  but  in  which  of  the  two  dis- 
tricts mentioned  by  Scott  he  taught  his  last  term  is  not  known;  it  was 
taught  in  the  winter  of  1856-57,  and  was  perhaps  not  completed,  for  he 
left  Ohio  for  Kansas  early  in  March  of  1857. 

1 7  In  Kansas  H.  V.  Beeson  received  a  letter  from  a  party  to  whom 
the  board-bill  was  due,  saying  that  it  was  unpaid  and  making  inquiry  as 
to  the  possibility  of  collecting  it  from  Quantrill  in  Kansas.     It  was  in 
telling  the  author  of  this  circumstance  that  Mrs.  Frances  Beeson  Thomp- 
son said  she  believed  the  school  was  taught  near  Urichsville,  it  being  her 
best   recollection   that  the   letter   came   from   some   one   living   near   that 
town. 


CHAPTER  III 

PROM  OHIO  TO  KANSAS 

HARMON  V.  BEESON  and  Colonel  Henry  Torrey  had 
lived  at  Canal  Dover,  Ohio,  several  years  prior  to  the 
year  1857.  They  found  themselves  with  growing  fam- 
ilies and  in  debt.  New  countries  have  ever  held  hope  for  men 
in  such  condition.  The  total  indebtedness  of  Beeson  was  five 
hundred  dollars,  which  sum  he  owed  to  Jesse  Deardorf .  He  had 
considerable  property  and  could  have  paid  the  debt,  but  know- 
ing that  it  would  require  money  to  begin  life  in  a  new  country, 
he  arranged  with  Deardorf  to  have  his  indebtedness  stand  over 
until  he  could  get  on  his  feet  in  Kansas.  Beeson  was  able  to 
make  such  terms  because  it  was  known  that  he  was  a  good  busi- 
ness man  and  thoroughly  honest.1 

i  Harmon  Vedder  Beeson  was  born  in  Schenectady  county,  New  York, 
January  15,  1809;  died  at  Paola,  Kansas,  May  28,  1886.  He  wag  a  Civil 
Engineer  and  went  to  Canal  Dover,  Ohio,  to  work  in  that  capacity  on  the 
Ohio  Canal  about  the  year  1827,  exact  date  unknown.  He  married  at 
Canal  Dover,  about  1830,  Eachel  C.  Eutt  (pronounced  Eoof),  who  was  born 
at  Hagerstown,  Maryland,  June  16,  1812.  They  had  the  following  chil- 
dren: 

Catherine,  born  March  23,  1833.     Married  Isaac  N.  Sparks. 

Frances,  born  October  27,  1836.  Married  George  Thompson;  lives 
in  Topeka. 

Phoebe,  born  February  1,  1838.     Married  G.  A.  Colton. 

Eichard,  born  about  1840.  Was  in  the  First  Kansas  Eegiment,  Civil 
War;  died  at  Vicksburg,  Miss.,  unmarried.  Died  during  siege  of  Vicks- 
burg. 

John  S.,  born  about  1844;  was  in  a  Kansas  regiment  in  Civil  War; 
married,  first,  Dorinda  Parrott ;  second,  

Jesse,  born  about  1846;  was  in  a  Kansas  regiment  in  the  Civil  War; 
married,  first,  Clara  Eischey ;  second,  

Charity,  born  the  day  President  Zachary  Taylor  died,  July  9,  1850; 
married  William  Freeman. 

Upon  the  completion  of  the  Ohio  Canal,  Beeson  was  appointed  col- 


FROM  OHIO  TO  KANSAS  55 

Colonel  Torrey  could  not  make  satisfactory  terms  with  his 
creditors.  He  was  an  honest  man,  but  he  was  much  involved. 
When  he  learned  that  Beeson  was  going  to  Kansas  he  wished  to 
go  with  him,  and  the  two  men  formed  a  sort  of  partnership, 
Torrey  saying  that  he  could  secure  some  money  from  relatives 
of  his  wife  at  "White  Plains,  New  York.  The  two  men  agreed  to 
meet  in  Terre  Haute,  Indiana,  but  later  this  point  was  changed  to 
St.  Louis,  Mo. 

Beeson  and  Torrey  did  not  bring  their  families  to  Kansas 
with  them.  Richard  Beeson  accompanied  his  father.  This 
caused  W.  C.  Quantrill  to  wish  to  be  one  of  the  party,  young 
Beeson  being  a  friend  of  his.  Mrs.  Quantrill  was  anxious  to 
have  him  go,  hoping  that  he  might  secure  a  farm  upon  which 
could  be  made  a  home  for  herself  and  children,  and  she  urged 
Mr.  Beeson  to  take  him  along.  Beeson  consulted  Colonel  Tor- 
rey as  to  what  should  be  done.  It  was  the  wish  of  both  to  do 
any  thing  possible  to  aid  Mrs.  Quantrill,  and  while  neither  had 
any  confidence  in  her  son,  it  was  decided  to  take  him  to  Kansas 
and  try  to  induce  him  to  abandon  his  roving,  idle  habits  and 
settle  himself  to  some  steady  occupation.  It  was  agreed  that 
Beeson  should  pay  his  way  to  the  point  where  Colonel  Torrey 
was  to  meet  him,  and  that  Colonel  Torrey  should  pay  it  from 
there  to  Kansas.  This  fare  was  to  be  an  advance  to  Quantrill, 
which  was  to  be  deducted  from  his  wages,  for  it  was  agreed  that 
they  would  give  him  employment  for  some  months  after  their 
arrival,  should  he  desire  them  to  do  so.  And  this  sum  was  in 
that  way  returned  to  Beeson  and  Torrey  by  Quantrill.3 

lector  of  customs  for  the  State  at  Canal  Dover  and  constructed  a  large 
warehouse.  Later  he  was  employed  as  teacher  in  the  city  schools  of  the 
town.  He  accumulated  property  and  became  one  of  the  principal  citizens 
of  the  place.  He  was  attracted  to  Kansas  by  the  controversy  over  slav- 
ery, and  believing  it  a  country  of  fine  resources  he  moved  there  hoping  to 
better  his  condition,  settling  in  Franklin  county,  March  22,  1857.  He  was 
county  surveyor  of  Franklin  county  and  a  member  of  the  legislature.  In 
the  fall  of  1863  he  moved  to  Paola,  Kansas,  where  he  engaged  in  the 
grocery  business,  and  where  he  lived  until  his  death,  a  substantial  and  much 
respected  citizen.  At  the  time  of  his  death  he  was  the  oldest  Freemason 
in  the  State. 

a  This  is  what  Beeson  and  his  family  have  always  said  of  this  matter. 
See  quotation  from  letter  of  Beeson  in  Note  1,  Chapter  IV.  In  his  letter 


56  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Mr.  Beeson,  his  son  Richard,  and  Quantrill  set  out  for  Kan- 
sas. They  went  to  the  Ohio  river  and  took  boat  for  St.  Louis, 
Mo.  There  they  waited  two  days  for  Colonel  Torrey  to  arrive, 
a  circumstance  which  shows  that  the  contention  of  Mrs.  Torrey- 
Wagstaff  that  Colonel  Torrey  met  Beeson  and  Quantrill  in  St. 

to  his  mother  Quantrill  says  he  had  enough  money  to  carry  him  through. 
He  may  have  referred  to  his  personal  expenses  and  not  to  fare  on  boats 
or  railroads.  In  a  letter  to  Captain  W.  O.  Hubble,  dated  at  Paola,  Kan- 
sas, January  17,  1884,  and  published  in  the  Lawrence,  Kansas,  Herald  and 
Tribune,  April  15,  1855,  Mrs.  M.  J.  Wagstaff  (formerly  Mrs.  Torrey) 
said,  "Early  in  the  spring  of  1857  Col.  H.  Yancy  [msiprint  for  Torrey], 
my  late  husband,  left  Dover  for  the  City  of  New  York;  from  there  in- 
tending to  come  direct  to  Kansas.  At  St.  Louis,  on  his  way  to  Kansas, 
he  met,  by  accident,  H.  V.  Beeson  and  W.  C.  Quantrill,  and  from  that 
point  they  came  to  Kansas  and  located  in  the  spring  of  1857,  near  Stan- 
ton,  then  in  Lykins,  now  Miami  county." 

When  Mrs.  Frances  Beeson  Thompson  was  shown  this  letter  she  de- 
clared its  statements  untrue  and  that  the  facts  are  as  set  out  herein. 

Writing  to  hia  paper,  the  True  Republican  and  Sentinel,  Sycamore, 
His.,  from  Paola,  Kansas,  August  15,  1863,  C.  M.  Chase  said: 

Paola  was  once  the  home  of  the  notorious  bushwhacker  and  outlaw, 
Quantrell.  Here  he  once  lived  in  harmony  with  those  he  would  now  plunder 
and  murder.  Our  landlord,  Col.  Torrey,  brought  him  here  from  Ohio, 
when  but  a  lad.  He  raised  him,  but  says  he  never  taught  him  the  art  of 
bushwhacking. 

The  Torreys  were  ever  the  friends  and  champions  of  Quantrill  after 
he  arrived  in  Kansas,  especially  Mrs.  Torrey,  who  was  the  real  head  of 
the  Torrey  household.  They  wined  him  and  dined  him  while  he  was  in 
the  jail  at  Paola  and  were  always  ready  with  some  defense  of  him  during 
all  his  war  exploits.  The  Torreys  were  pro-slavery  in  sentiment  and  also 
in  practice  so  far  as  they  could  be  in  Kansas.  Mrs.  Torrey 's  sister 
married  a  Missouri  slave-owner  who  went  into  the  Confederate  army  and 
was  there  killed. 

Mrs.  Torrey  was  a  Miss  Redfield.  She  was  a  great  horse-woman,  and 
would  race  through  Canal  Dover  on  horseback  scattering  citizens,  geese, 
children,  and  pigs  as  she  went.  Colonel  Torrey  was  a  widower  when  he 
married  her.  Previous  to  this  marriage  Miss  Eedfield  had  gone  to  Cleve- 
land, where,  with  a  note  for  one  thousand  dollars,  having  her  mother's 
name  to  it,  she  purchased  a  stock  of  millinery.  She  brought  this  mil- 
linery to  Canal  Dover  and  induced  H.  V.  Beeson  to  let  her  have  the  front 
room  of  his  dwelling  for  a  shop.  There  she  opened  a  millinery  shop  and 
disposed  of  her  stock. 

Colonel  Henry  Torrey  was  a  soldier  in  the  Mexican  War,  and  a 
colonel  of  an  Ohio  or  New  York  regiment,  it  is  said.  He  was  a  mild- 
mannered,  easy-going,  spiritless,  hopeless  man  who  drifted  through  life. 


FROM  OHIO  TO  KANSAS  57 

Louis  by  accident,  and  came  on  to  Kansas  with  them  cannot  be 
admitted,  and  that  Colonel  Torrey  was  to  meet  Beeson  at  some 
point  on  the  way,  as  Beeson  and  his  family  always  claimed. 
Quantrill  carried  with  him  some  of  the  tinner-books  published 
by  his  father,  intending  to  sell  them  in  towns  where  the  boats 
might  stop.  He  did  not  sell  them  all,  having  a  number  on  hand 
when  he  arrived  in  Kansas.  The  first  letter  he  wrote  to  his 
mother  after  he  left  home  was  written  on  a  Missouri  river  steam- 
boat.3 

Missouri  River 

March  8.  1857. 
My  Dear  Mother. 

I  neglected  writing  to  you  at  St.  Louis  although  we  were 
there  two  days  before  Mr.  Torry  came.  We  are  all  well  as  usual 
except  Richard  who  has  a  little  cold.  We  have  been  on  the  river 
since  last  Wednesday  the  4.  &  we  have  296  miles  to  go  yet  so 
that  we  will  not  be  there  for  about  3  or  4  days  yet  we  have  been 
delayed  very  much  on  account  of  the  bad  state  of  the  river.  I 
did  not  make  as  much  money  in  St.  Louis  as  I  anticipated  but 
still  I  have  enough  to  carry  me  through.  I  will  write  you  an- 
other letter  at  Leavenworth  city  before  we  start  into  the  country. 
There  are  a  great  many  going  to  Kansas  at  present  and  among 
them  220  soldiers  to  keep  peace  amongst  us.  Mr.  Torry  bought 
a  shot  gun  &  two  revolvers  so  that  we  are  pretty  well  armed. 
We  did  not  buy  much  provision  for  we  can  get  it  just  as  cheap 
up  the  river.  The  boat  we  are  on  is  pretty  well  crowded  &  we 
have  to  sleep  on  the  floor.  I  have  not  had  my  clothes  off  but 
once  since  I  left  &  that  was  to  put  on  a  clean  shirt  so  that  we 
are  getting  used  to  it  allready  Your  Son 

W.  C.  Quantrill 

He  was  a  thoroughly  honest,  good  man,  and  was  always  greatly  respected 
by  the  people  where  he  lived.  When  Mrs.  Torrey  arrived  in  Kansas  she 
was  much  disappointed  and  desired  to  return  to  Ohio,  but  the  colonel  was 
not  able  to  take  her  back.  She  revolted  against  her  life  in  Kansas  on  a 
squatter's  claim  in  a  log  cabin.  Colonel  Torrey  sold  his  land  as  soon  as 
he  could  and  bought  a  building  in  Paola,  where  he  kept  a  hotel  as  long 
as  he  lived. 

Torrey  did  not  return  to  Canal  Dover  for  his  family,  but  had  Beeson 
bring  his  wife  and  children  out  to  Kansas  when  he  went  to  get  his  own 
family.  After  the  death  of  Colonel  Torrey  and  her  marriage  to  Judge 
W.  R.  Wagstaff,  Mrs.  Torrey  became  a  lawyer  and  her  two  daughters 
became  lawyers. 

3  Letter  of  W.  C.  Quantrill  to  his  mother,  now  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author. 


58     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BOEDER  WARS 

The  intention  to  go  to  Leavenworth  was  abandoned  because 
of  the  long  time  it  had  taken  the  boat  to  ascend  the  Missouri 
river.  The  party  left  the  boat  at  Independence,  Mo.*  Quantrill 
wrote  to  his  mother  from  that  place,  March  15,  1857,  saying  that 
they  had  intended  to  keep  on  the  river  to  Leavenworth,  but  that 
low  water  had  already  delayed  them  nine  days.s 

At  Independence  they  purchased  two  ox-teams  and  out- 
fitted for  the  rough  life  in  the  new  country  to  which  they  were 
bound,  buying  bacon,  flour,  beans,  salt,  and  other  articles.  They 
arrived  on  the  Marais  des  Cygnes,  in  Franklin  county,  Kansas, 
near  Stanton,  which  is  in  Miami  (then  Lykins)  county,  on  the 
22d  day  of  March,  1857. 

At  the  time  of  his  arrival  in  Kansas  Quantrill  was  nearly 
twenty,  lacking  only  about  four  months  of  having  attained  that 
age.  He  was  boyish  in  appearance  and  seemed  no  more  than 
sixteen  or  seventeen.  His  hair  was  still  very  light,  almost  white, 
not  taking  on  the  red  tinge  until  later.  He  was  rather  slim  and 
spare,  though  not  lean.  He  was  well  formed,  and  when  seen  at 
a  distance  too  great  to  distinguish  each  separate  feature  he  was 
regarded  as  fine  looking.  His  carriage  was  good,  though  men 
have  been  known  to  take  a  deep  dislike  to  him  at  first  sight 
when  he  was  walking  about;  there  was  something  cat-like  and 
treacherous  in  his  very  movement.  Following  is  a  review  of  his 
life  up  to  the  time  he  came  to  Kansas: 

Quantrill  was  cruel  and  heartless  as  a  boy.  And  his  in- 
clination was  to  be  idle  and  worthless.  He  was  considered  "pe- 
culiar," to  use  no  harsher  term.  He  was  self-contained,  self- 
confident.  He  was  of  a  reflective  turn  of  mind,  brooding  over 
those  things  which  affected  him  personally.  He  came  to  un- 
natural conclusions  from  a  course  of  reasoning  which  others 
could  not  comprehend.  He  was  obstinate,  often  defiant.  His 
chief  characteristic  was  treachery.  Kindness  did  not  appeal  to 
him,  and  he  bore  malice,  cherishing  any  real  or  imaginary  wrong 

4  Bather,  at  Wayne  City,  the  name  of  the  Independence  landing. 

5  This  letter  is  probably  lost.     Mention  of  it  is  made  by  W.  W.  Scott 
in  a  short  sketch  he  wrote  of  Quantrill  and  which  is  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author.     Scott  quoted  from  the  letter  and  must  have  had  it  before 
him  as  he  wrote. 


FROM  OHIO  TO  KANSAS  59 

and  biding  his  time.  There  was  no  forgiveness  in  his  nature; 
any  manifestation  of  gratitude  shown  by  him  was  but  an  excep- 
tion dictated  usually  by  policy.  He  was  calculating  and  far- 
seeing  ;  he  had  patience  and  he  did  not  forget.  Mentally  he  was 
above  the  average.  He  reasoned  rapidly  and  rarely  changed  his 
mind,  once  he  had  reached  a  conclusion.  Many  of  his  charac- 
teristics were  feminine,  and  he  was  secretive  by  nature.  He  was 
sensitive,  and  no  compensation  could  be  made  him  for  an  offense ; 
he  might  pretend  to  be  satisfied  with  apology  or  reparation,  but 
the  matter  remained  with  him  and  rankled  in  him.  He  had 
persistency  in  a  marked  degree,  and  he  was  bold  and  dogged  in 
the  execution  of  any  design  once  formed.  He  had  no  moral  per- 
ceptions, being  in  this  respect  depraved  —  a  degenerate.  Of 
physical  courage  he  had  enough,  though  as  a  boy  he  was  counted 
a  coward.  As  a  boy,  no  one  could  understand  him,  and  to  the 
end  of  his  life  he  was  a  deepening  mystery.  He  was  not  a 
favorite  in  company,  being  seemingly  pre-occupied  and  given  to 
strange  remarks.  Walking  along  the  bank  of  the  Marais  des 
Cygnes  one  day  he  observed  a  large  branch  growing  straight  out 
over  the  road.  He  was  in  the  company  of  a  young  lady  and  re- 
marked, "I  could  hang  six  men  on  that  limb."  The  conversa- 
tion had  not  been  upon  hanging  men,  and  from  that  day  the 
parents  of  the  young  lady  refused  to  allow  her  to  be  in  his  com- 
pany. Many  of  these  characteristics  were  still  latent  in  Quan- 
trill  when  he  arrived  in  Kansas.  Under  normal  conditions  they 
might  not  have  developed  fully.  In  ordinary  times  he  would 
have  been  a  disagreeable  neighbor,  venting  his  malice  by  maiming 
a  horse  or  poisoning  cattle.  Under  what  he  might  have  consid- 
ered strong  provocation  he  would  have  shot  his  adversary  fronu 
ambush  or  cut  him  to  pieces  in  the  dark.  He  would  have  sought 
occasions  to  have  acted  apparently  on  the  defensive,  when  he  was 
the  real  aggressor. 

From  the  first  he  was  ambitious  to  acquire  property  and 
have  money.  But  he  was  lazy.  He  abhorred  labor.  He  was  in- 
capable of  continued  exertion  in  any  particular  direction.  Re- 
straint of  any  kind  he  would  not  stand.  When  at  work  for  an- 
other he  was  impatient  of  ordinary  directions.  He  wished  to 
arrive  at  fortune  by  some  great  stroke  not  well  defined  in  his 


60  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

own  mind,  some  good  luck,  favorable  circumstance,  intrigue. 
This  made  him  dishonest,  and  all  his  life  he  was  a  thief.  He  was 
devoid  of  natural  affection.6 


6  His  admirers  always  tell  of  his  deep  abiding  love  for  his  mother. 
He  had  no  such  affection.  After  he  left  home  he  never  contributed  a  cent 
to  her  support,  though  through  theft  and  robbery  he  had  thousands  upon 
thousands  of  dollars.  At  his  death  he  left  her  nothing,  but  he  did  leave 
his  mistress  money  with  which  to  start  a  bagnio  in  St.  Louis,  Mo.  This 
is  established  by  several  witnesses,  one  of  whom  is  quoted.  John  Harmon 
was  a  traveling  salesman  who  lived  long  in  Canal  Dover.  Scott,  in  the 
Iron  Valley  Reporter,  cast  some  reflections  on  him  and  his  failure  in 
business  at  Wooster,  Ohio.  In  answer  to  the  insinuations  of  Scott,  Har- 
mon wrote  him  a  letter  dated,  1237  Dean  Street,  Brooklyn,  N.  Y.,  Decem- 
bre  19,  1900,  in  which  he  says: 

After  Quantrell  was  wounded  in  the  skirmish  he  had  with  the  Federal 
troops  down  in  Kentucky,  the  Sisters  took  him  in  and  sent  for  a  Catholic 
Priest,  to  whom  he  gave  the  sum  of  two  thousand  dollars,  being  about 
half  the  money  he  had  with  him,  and  who  granted  him  absolution;  and  the 
other  half  he  gave  to  a  young  woman  who  used  occasionally  to  accompany 
him  in  some  of  his  raids.  After  his  death  she  went  to  Saint  Louis,  where 
White  says  he  called  on  her  and  she  told  him  that  she  furnished  her  house 
with  the  money  that  "Billy"  left  her. 

The  question  that  interests  me  most  just  now  is  this:  Will  the 
absolution  obtained  through  the  kind  offices  of  the  Sisters  and  the  Priest, 
for  which  he  paid  two  thousand  dollars  or  more,  avail  him?  Is  he  now 
walking  the  golden  streets  of  the  New  Jerusalem,  singing  the  Psalms  of 
David,  or  has  ferryman  Charon  put  him  on  the  boat  destined  for  hades, 
where  unfortunately,  he  may  meet  some  of  his  many  victims  who  were  not 
so  fortunate  as  to  have  the  absolution  of  a  priest  before  their  sudden  tak- 
ing off  at  the  hands  of  this  bloody  murderer?  How  much  nobler  to  have 
given  this  money  to  his  old  mother,  who  was  compelled  to  live  in  the  Poor 
House  for  the  last  few  years.  No  one  but  a  blood-thirsty  murderer  would 
have  treated  his  mother  as  Quantrell  has  treated  his. 

The  man,  White,  referred  to  in  the  above  quotation  was  at  one  time 
with  Quantrill.  I  find  the  following  in  reference  to  him  in  Harmon's 
letter : 

Several  years  after  the  war,  the  firm  I  was  with  hired  a  young  man 
by  the  name  of  White,  as  a  salesman.  White  told  the  writer  that  when 
Quantrell  first  organized  his  company  of  Missourians,  which  was  for  the 
ostensible  purpose  of  protecting  their  property  against  the  Kansas  Jay- 
hawkers,  that  he,  White,  joined  it,  but  soon  found  out  that  Quantrell  would 
commit  murder  on  the  slightest  excuse  and  at  once  left  him  and  went  to 
Texas,  taking  his  father's  horses  and  mules  with  him  and  remained  there 
until  after  the  war.  At  the  same  time  that  Quantrell  was  at  the  head 
of  this  Missouri  company,  he  was  also  at  the  head  of  a  company  of  Kansas 
Jayhawkers  for  the  assumed  purpose  of  protecting  their  property  against 
Missouri  raiders. 

As  a  further  confirmation  of  the  fact  that  Quantrell  never  sent  his 
mother  any  money,  there  is  a  list  of  questions  written  by  W.  W.  Scott 
for  Mrs.  Quantrill  to  answer.  This  list  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 


FROM  OHIO  TO  KANSAS 


61 


One  of  the  questions  is,  "Did  he  [W.  C.  Quantrill]  ever  send  any  thing 
home?"  The  answer,  written  after  the  question,  by  Scott,  is  "Never." 
Scott  evidently  took  his  questions  to  Mrs.  Quantrill  and  wrote  down  the 
answers  to  them  from  her  own  lips. 


CHAPTER  IV 

QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH 

THE  first  care  of  Beeson  and  Torrey  upon  their  arrival 
on  the  Marais  des  Cygnes  was  to  secure  farms.  The  lands 
were  all  held  by  squatters  pending  the  completion  of  sur- 
veys and  sales  of  land  by  the  government.  The  squatter  might 
sell  his  "claim,"  and  he  often  did  so.  This  claim  was  only  pos- 
session and  the  right  to  preempt  the  land  and  purchase  it  from 
the  United  States  at  public  outcry.  Beeson  bought  the  squatter 
right  to  the  northwest  quarter  of  Section  34,  Township  17,  Range 
21,  and  Torrey  purchased  a  similar  right  to  the  northeast  quar- 
ter of  the  same  section.  Both  claims  were  in  Franklin  county, 
but  the  corner  of  Torrey 's  claim  was  only  a  half  mile  south  and 
the  same  distance  west  of  the  village  of  Stanton,  in  Lykins,  now 
Miami,  county.  The  east  line  of  Torrey 's  claim  was  the  line  be- 
tween the  counties.  Torrey  also  bought  a  claim  for  Quantrill 
to  hold  for  him.  Quantrill  was  a  minor  and  could  not  lawfully 
hold  a  claim  for  himself  or  any  one  else,  but  such  irregularities 
were  common  at  the  time.  The  claim  held  by  Quantrill  is  the 
northeast  quarter  of  Section  21,  Township  17,  Eange  21,  and 
something  like  two  miles  north  of  the  claims  of  Beeson  and  Tor- 
rey. He  never  pretended  that  he  held  this  claim  for  himself, 
never  thought  of  having  any  ownership  or  title  in  the  land,  as- 
sertions of  his  admirers  to  the  contrary  notwithstanding.  Beeson 
and  Torrey  each  paid  $500  for  his  claim,  and  Torrey  paid  $250 
for  the  claim  held  by  Quantrill.  For  holding  this  claim,  bidding 
it  in  at  the  land-sales,  and  assigning  the  certificate  of  sale  to 
Torrey,  Quantrill  was  to  be  paid  $60.  He  did  so  hold  the  claim, 
did  bid  it  in,  and  did  assign  the  certificate  of  sale  to  Torrey.1 


i  They  arrived  in  Lykins  County,  and  settled  near  Stanton  on  the 
22d  of  March,  each  one  of  the  three  taking  a  claim,  or  rather  buying  a 
preemption  right  of  a  squatter,  Beeson  and  Torrey  each  paying  $500  for 


FROM  OHIO  TO  KANSAS  63 

Upon  the  claim  purchased  by  Torrey  stood  an  old  log  cabin 
of  small  dimensions.  Across  the  back  part  of  it  there  was  a 
sort  of  platform  which  served  as  a  bedstead  and  upon  which 
Torrey  and  Beeson  slept.  Quantrill  and  Richard  Beeson  slept 
on  blankets  spread  before  the  fire  on  the  floor.  The  spring  nights 
were  cold,  and  when  the  fire  would  burn  down  the  room  became 
uncomfortable.  Quantrill  would  then  roll  himself  in  the  blankets 
and  leave  young  Beeson  to  freeze,  and  the  remonstrances  of 
Beeson  and  Torrey  did  not  cause  him  to  quit  the  practice.  One 
night  Beeson  said,  "Richard,  you  sleep  with  Colonel  Torrey,  and 
I  will  sleep  with  Bill,"  (by  Ohio  associates  Quantrill  was  usu- 
ally called  "Bill").  The  change  in  bedfellows  was  accordingly 
made. 

Colonel  Torrey  had  brought  from  Mexico  a  dagger  with  a 
blade  some  twelve  inches  in  length,  a  finely  proportioned  and 
beautiful  weapon  which  he  had  in  his  trunk  in  the  cabin.  In 
the  night  while  sleeping  Beeson  was  seized  with  an  apprehension 
of  immediate  danger,  and  with  difficulty  forced  himself  awake. 
By  the  dim  light  of  the  fire  he  saw  Quantrill  standing  over  him 

their  claims,  and  also  paying  $250  for  the  claim  standing  in  Quantrill 's 
name.  —  Andreas 's  History  of  Kansas,  p.  877. 

Mr.  Torrey  and  myself  and  my  oldest  son  Eichard  and  Wm  C 
Quantrell  Left  Canal  Dover  on  the  26th  February  1857  Mr.  Torrey  going 
to  New  York  to  collect  some  money  there  and  the  Bal  [the  others]  for 
Kansas  with  the  understanding  to  meet  in  St.  Louis.  Left  St.  Louis  on 
the  4th  of  March  &  Landed  at  Wayne  City  Landing  on  the  13th  (Independ- 
ence Jackson  Co.  Mo)  Bought  our  outfits  and  started  for  Kansas  Land- 
ed at  Stanton  on  the  22nd  of  March  and  Bought  3  claims  or  quarters  of 
land  Wm  C.  Quantrell  holding  a  timber  claim  for  Mr  Torrey  and  Bidding 
it  in  for  him  on  or  about  the  26  June  or  Perhaps  28  for  and  assigning  the 
certificate  of  sale  to  Mr.  Torrey  he  Paying  the  money  to  U  S  Commissioner 
Mr  Walker  at  the  Land  Sales  at  Paola  (and  stands  so  to  day  on  the 
government  Record  of  said  Sales)  —  From  letter  of  H.  V.  Beeson  to 
W.  W.  Scott,  dated  Paola,  Kansas,  June  5,  1880.  Letter  now  in  the 
Collection  of  the  author. 

The  records  in  the  United  States  land  office  at  Topeka  show  that 
William  C.  Quantrill  bid  in  the  northeast  quarter  of  Section  21,  Township 
17,  Eange  21,  at  the  sale  of  public  lands  held  in  Paola  on  the  29th  day  of 
June,  1857,  paying  therefor  $2.25  per  acre,  or  $360  for  the  quarter  sec- 
tion. 

Some  accounts  say  that  Torrey  paid  Quantrill  $200  to  hold  the  claim 
and  bid  it  in  for  him.  Mrs.  Frances  Beeson  Thompson  thinks  the  amount 
was  $200.  Most  people  say  that  he  was  paid  $60.  The  exact  amount  may 
never  be  known. 


64  QUANTEILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

in  the  act  of  plunging  the  Mexican  dagger  into  his  heart.  He 
called  to  Quantrill  to  know  what  he  was  doing  there,  and  Quan- 
trill  hesitated.  Torrey  was  by  this  time  awake,  and  Beeson  told 
him  to  make  Quantrill  put  the  dagger  back  into  the  trunk,  which 
was  standing  open.  This  Torrey  did.  Beeson  got  up  and  went 
out  of  the  house.  He. returned  with  a  good  hickory  switch  or 
small  club  which  he  laid  on  until  Quantrill  cried  for  mercy.3 

Quantrill  wrote  home  frequently.  A  copy  of  the  letter  to 
his  mother  written  May  16  is  preserved.  It  shows  that  he 
wished  to  have  her  move  to  Kansas.s  The  letter  is  given  below : 

Stanton  Kansas  Ter.  May  16,1857. 
My  dear  Mother. 

1  have  not  received  a  letter  from  you  since  I  left  home,  but 
I  have  heard  that  you  are  all  well,  which  kept  me  satisfied;  but 
I  will  not  be  so  any  longer  until  I  receive  a  letter  from  you.  And 
I  shall  continue  to  write  until  I  receive  a  letter  from  you  "in 
your  own  hand  write"  as  the  Irishman  said.    We  are  all  well 
as  usual.     I  have  just  finished  a  hard  job  of  rolling  logs  at  a 
clearing  around  our  cabin,  which  we  are  going  to  put  in  potatoes. 
Yesterday  we  just  finished  planting  a  Ten-acre  field  of  corn  on 
the  prairie,  which  Mr.  Torrey  &  I  plowed.    Next  week  we  are 
going  to  commence  a  20  acre  field,  so  that  we  will  have  corn 
enough  for  next  winter  at  least. 

We  have  had  a  very  backward  spring  here;  but  from  what 
news  we  get  they  have  had  a  worse  time  in  Ohio  and  all  of  the 
eastern  states.  Although  the  trees  are  all  green  here,  and  the 
prairie  looks  like  a  field  of  wheat.  I  suppose  by  the  time  you 
receive  this  letter  Granfather  will  be  there  if  he  is  not  there 
already.  If  he  is  there  or  not,  I  want  you  if  possible  to  sell  out 
there  and  let  me  have  part  of  the  money  out  here  to  procure  a 
home  for  us  all,  consisting  of  160  acres  of  land;  either  prairie 
or  timber,  or  half  of  each,  or  almost  any  proportion  of  each  one 
would  wish  to  have.  If  you  can  do  this  by  any  possible  means 
do  so  and  we  can  move  here  this  fall  &  be  much  more  comfortably 
situated  than  in  Dover,  or  any  place  else  east  of  Kansas.  Older 
heads  than  mine  may  try  to  persuade  you  that  this  is  not  the 
case,  but  it  is  so,  for  all  is  peace  and  quietness  here  now,  &  it 
will  remain  so  without  doubt.  Why,  not  less  than  50,000  people 
from  the  North  have  come  into  the  Territory  this  spring  so  that 

2  Told  me  by  Mrs.  Frances  Beeson  Thompson. 

3  This  copy  was  made  by  W.  W.  Scott.     It  is  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author.     What  became  of  the  original  is  not  known. 


QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH  65 

Kansas  will  soon  be  a  State  among  States  &  able  to  maintain  her 
own  rights. 

If  you  can  persuade  Grandfather  to  let  us  sell  out  root  & 
branch  it  will  be  undoubtedly  the  best  thing  you  could  do.  Then 
we  will  all  be  square  with  the  world  &  able  to  say  our  soul  is 
our  own  without  being  contradicted.  Is  not  this  worth  sacri- 
ficing something  for?  I  think  it  is  and  so  you  will,  I  know.  If 
we  cannot  do  this  I  will  not  stay  here  longer  than  fall,  for  I  can 
make  more  money  in  the  States  at  teaching  than  by  hard  work 
here.  I  am  here  now  as  an  agent  to  get  a  home  for  us  all,  which 
I  can  do  if  there  is  not  too  much  opposition.  I  have  thought 
over  the  matter,  and  Mr.  Torrey  says  it  is  the  best  I  can  do.  Do 
not  let  anybody  persuade  you  out  of  this  until  they  produce  bet- 
ter grounds  for  not  doing  as  I  have  said  than  I  have  for  doing 
so.  It  is  the  best  we  can  do,  and  everybody  will  say  so  who  rea- 
sons the  case  well. 

If  you  can  have  such  good  luck  as  to  dispose  of  the  property, 
you  can  take  out  letters  of  administration  yourself.  If  not, 
Grandfather  or  some  one  in  whom  you  can  confide.  If  the  thing 
can  be  done,  do  it  as  soon  as  you  can  for  it  will  be  all  the  better. 

I  will  tell  you  now  how  we  get  along  here.  We  live  on  side 
meat  —  bacon  about  four  inches  thick;  corn  cakes,  beans,  few 
dried  apples  occasionally,  &  fish  &  squirrels  when  we  can  get 
them  which  we  have  pretty  good  luck  doing.  Our  house  is  built 
of  round  logs  with  a  fire  place  made  partly  of  stone ;  a  floor  made 
of  puncheon  —  that  is  split  boards  about  3  inches  thick.  Our 
furniture  consists  of  2  stools  made  out  of  puncheon,  3  trunks  & 
a  table  made  when  we  wish  to  use  it  by  putting  a  board  (which 
we  found  in  the  river)  across  the  2  trunks.  Our  walls  are  deco- 
rated with  guns,  boots,  side  meat,  skillets,  surveying  chain  &c. 
The  only  job  that  we  have  to  do  that  we  all  dislike,  is  dishwash- 
ing which  Mr.  Beeson  is  doing  now.  We  have  to  take  turn  about 
at  it ;  no  one  will  do  it  more  than  twice  in  succession.  Our  stock 
consists  of  3  yoke  of  cattle,  six  pigs  &  about  2  dozen  chickens. 
We  will  have  by  fall  3  times  as  much  stock  if  we  have  good  luck. 
All  I  want  is  for  the  rest  of  you  to  be  here,  and  we  will  live 
twice  as  fast. 

The  letter  ends  abruptly,  and  there  is  no  signature  on  the 
copy.  It  is  probable  that  the  whole  letter  was  not  copied. 

Although  Quantrill  was  paid  to  work  he  was  a  very  unsatis- 
factory hand.  He  prowled  through  the  timber  of  the  river 
bottoms  with  a  gun  most  of  the  time,  and  every  day  he  visited 
the  claim  he  was  holding  for  Torrey.  He  would  not  be  brought 
to  see  that  he  should  apply  himself  steadily  to  the  employment 


66  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

for  which  he  was  paid,  and  on  his  mother's  account  he  was  not 
discharged.  After  he  had  bid  in  the  land  for  Torrey  and  re- 
ceived his  pay  therefor,  he  began  to  stay  much  of  the  time  at  the 
house  of  one  John  Bennings.4  Bennings  was  in  full  sympathy 
with  the  pro-slavery  element,  though  he  pretended  to  be  a  Free- 
State  man.  He  persuaded  Quantrill  to  believe  that  he  had  been 
swindled  by  Torrey  and  Beeson.  Quantrill  demanded  $90  in 
addition  to  what  had  been  paid  him.  Rather  than  have  a  diffi- 

4  In  an  interview  had  by  the  author  with  Martin  Van  Buren  Jackson, 
father  of  Hon.  Fred  8.  Jackson,  attorney  general  of  Kansas,  March  13, 
1908,  the  following  information  about  the  Bennings  family  was  obtained. 
Mr.  Jackson  was  one  of  the  earliest  settlers  at  Stanton,  and  his  son  Fred 
was  born  in  the  old  blockhouse  there: 

John  Bennings  was  born  in  Pike  county,  Mo.,  as  Mr.  Jackson  be- 
lieved. It  is  certain  that  he  lived  there  at  one  time,  for  in  the  Andreas 
History  of  Kansas  it  ia  stated  that  his  two  sons  were  born  there.  Bennings 
was  a  tall  thin-breasted  man,  afflicted  with  the  old  lingering  consumption. 
His  children  were  all  tall  and  thin-breasted,  and  they  all  seemed  to  have 
consumption.  They  died  in  early  life,  soon  after  they  were  grown  up. 
The  children  were: 

John   Bennings, 

Adolphus  Y.  Benningg, 

Albert  Bennings, 

"Bud"  Bennings,  ( James f) 

"Sis"  Bennings. 

They  are  all  dead.  John  Bennings,  the  father,  was  a  frontiersman. 
He  went  to  California  from  Pike  county,  Mo.,  in  1849,  taking  his  family. 
He  went  from  California  to  Texas.  He  came  to  Kansas  Territory  from 
Texas,  and  took  a  claim  on  the  Marais  des  Cygnes,  near  Stanton.  He  was 
a  hunter  and  trapper.  He  had  a  long,  heavy  rifle,  of  large  caliber,  with 
which  to  kill  buffaloes,  which  he  called  "Betsey"  or  "Old  Betsey."  He 
had  a  very  large  shot-gun,  and  other  rifles,  pistols  and  knives,  also  many 
traps  in  which  to  capture  wild  animals.  His  only  occupation  was  hunting 
and  trapping  in  the  heavy  timber  along  the  Marais  des  Cygnes. 

Quantrill  liked  Bennings  and  his  shiftless  ways  of  living  —  liked  the 
haphazard,  irresponsible  life  led  by  Bennings.  Quantrill  loved  to  roam 
and  tramp  idly  and  aimlessly.  These  traits  bound  Quantrill  and  the  Ben- 
nings  family.  Bennings  was  a  strong  pro-slavery  man,  and  the  first  bent 
of  Qnantrill  in  favor  of  the  border-ruffians  came  from  his  association  with 
the  Bennings  family. 

Adolphus  Y.  Bennings  told  James  Hanway  that  he  was  with  Quan- 
trill on  his  trip  across  the  Plains,  and  they  were  probably  in  Utah  to- 
gether, returning  by  way  of  Pike's  Peak.  The  card  of  Hanway  with  this 
information  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 


QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH      67 

culty  with  him  it  was  agreed,  through  the  efforts  of  E.  P.  Hicks, 
that  he  should  be  paid  $63  in  two  deferred  installments  —  one 
of  $33  and  one  of  $30.s 

5  There  has  been  much  said  and  little  known  of  this  settlement.  As 
good  an  authority  as  the  Andreas  History  of  Kansas  (Herd  Book)  says 
this  claim  was  submitted  to  a  "squatter's  court": 

Some  time  afterwards  Quantrill  desired  to  sell  out  his  interest  in 
the  claim;  and  as  he  and  Mr.  Torrey  could  not  agree  as  to  what  was 
rightly  due  Quantrill,  the  matter  was  submitted  to  a  "squatter's  court"  for 
arbitration.  The  court  decided  that  Beeson  and  Torrey  owed  Quantrill 
$63.  The  financial  relations  between  Messrs.  Beeson  and  Torrey  were  such 
that  the  understanding  was  reached  between  them  that  the  latter  should 
pay  Quantrill  the  $63.  Torrey  had  no  money  to  pay  with,  and  in  order  for 
him  to  raise  the  money  it  was  necessary  for  him  to  go  to  Lecompton  to 
sell  some  land  warrants  he  held.  On  account  of  sickness  he  was  unable 
to  go  to  Lecompton.  —  Andreas 's  History  of  Kansas,  p.  877. 

While  the  settlement  was  by  arbitration  it  was  a  small  matter  and 
made  no  stir  in  the  community.  It  has  been  confused  with  the  settle- 
ment of  the  business  relations  between  Beeson  and  Torrey.  Even  the 
children  of  Beeson  make  this  mistake.  The  "squatter's  court"  was  con- 
vened to  adjust  the  matters  between  Beeson  and  Torrey,  and  it  consisted 
of  a  number  of  settlers,  among  them  Joab  Toney,  J.  B.  Hobson,  Josiab 
Bundy,  Charles  Eice,  and  perhaps  3.  A.  Hester.  Hobson  acted  as  secre- 
tary and  it  required  several  days  to  make  a  satisfactory  settlement.  Mrs. 
Frances  Beeson  Thompson  remembers  carrying  meals  to  the  arbitrators, 
who  held  their  court  in  an  old  log  cabin  on  the  river  below  Beeson 's. 
Mr.  Hobson  writes  the  author  as  follows: 

Paola,  Kansas,  Oct.  22,  1907. 

I  was  not  sec.  of  the  board  of  arbitration  between  Quantrill,  Beeson 
and  Torrey.  Their  differences  were  adjusted  by  E.  P.  Hicks,  the  father 
of  Mrs.  David  Overmyer  of  Topeka. 

I  was  one  of  the  arbitrators  that  settled  the  partnership  business  be- 
tween Torrey  and  Beeson  with  which  Quantrill  had  nothing  to  do. 

My  recollection  is  that  Torrey  and  Beeson  and  Quantrill  had  a  busi- 
ness dispute  and  Quantrill  took  a  yoke  of  oxen  belonging  to  Torrey  and 
Beeson  and  hid  them  in  the  brush  for  the  purpose  of  forcing  a  settlement 
as  he  Q.  claimed.  All  three  of  the  parties  came  to  Stanton  and  selected 
E.  P.  Hicks  to  arbitrate  their  differences  which  he  did  and  the  oxen 
were  returned.  I  dont  remember  what  Hick's  findings  were. 

The  last  payment  made  to  Quantrill  on  his  award  was  made  in  October, 
1857.  The  receipt  for  this  final  payment  is  now  in  the  library  of  the 
Kansas  State  Historical  Society  and  is  as  follows: 

30,00  Eecd  Stanton  Oct  22d  1857  of  George  Torrey  thirty  dollars  for 
bal.  due  on  settlement  by  arbitration  with  Torrey  &  Beeson 

(Signed)  W.  C.  Quantrill 

The  receipt  is  No.  1288,  Kansas  State  Historical  Society  Collections. 
It  was  furnished  the  Society  by  John  Speer,  September  30,  1878.  Speer 
seems  to  have  secured  it  from  Mrs.  Wagstaff.  It  is  endorsed:  "W.  C. 
Quantrill  Eeceipt  30,00." 


68     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

After  settlement  and  before  payments  had  been  made  on  the 
award  Quantrill  became  clamorous  for  his  money,  perhaps  at 
the  instigation  of  Bennings.  The  amount  was  due  from  Torrey 
and  not  from  Beeson.  To  force  payment  Quantrill  stole  a  yoke 
of  oxen  from  Beeson  and  some  fine  blankets  and  a  brace  of  re- 
volvers from  Torrey.  Beeson  looked  the  country  over  for  his 
cattle,  thinking  at  first  that  they  had  strayed.  Not  finding  them 
and  being  unable  to  hear  anything  of  them,  he  concluded  that 
Quantrill  had  stolen  them.  Meeting  Quantrill,  he  accused  him 
of  the  theft,  told  him  if  the  cattle  were  not  pointed  out  to  him 
he  would  shoot  him  down  like  a  dog,  reminding  Quantrill  of  his 
ingratitude  and  dishonesty.  He  ordered  Quantrill  to  step  into 
the  path  before  him  and  lead  the  way  to  the  cattle  on  pain  of 
instant  death.  Quantrill  stepped  into  the  path  as  directed,  and 
Beeson  put  the  muzzle  of  his  gun  against  Quantrill's  back  and 
told  him  to  lead  on.  Quantrill  led  the  way  into  a  dense  thicket 
in  the  river  bottom,  and  there  stood  the  oxen,  yoked,  chained  to 
a  tree,  and  so  weak  from  starvation  that  they  could  scarcely 
stand.  They  were  famished  for  water,  and  had  to  be  fed  and 
watered  a  day  or  two  before  they  were  strong  enough  to  be 
driven  home.6 

It  is  not  probable  that  Beeson  saw  much  of  Quantrill  subse- 
quent to  the  settlement  made  at  the  instigation  of  Bennings,  for 

6  The  Andreas  History  says :  In  consequence  of  this  delay  Quan- 
trill became  impatient,  and  in  order  to  get  his  pay,  stole  a  yoke  of  cattle 
belonging  to  Mr.  Beeson.  Some  few  days  thereafter  Beeson  met  Quantrill 
about  sunrise  on  the  prairie.  Quantrill  turned  to  avoid  Beeson,  when  the 
latter,  bringing  his  rifle  to  bear  upon  the  former,  who  was  about  ten  rods 
distant,  hailed  him  with,  "Bill,  stop!  I  want  to  see  you."  Quantrill 
turned  towards  Beeson,  when  the  latter  again  commanded,  "Lay  your  gun 
down  in  the  grass ! ' '  This  order  was  also  obeyed,  when  Beeson  said,  ' '  You 
must  bring  my  oxen  back  by  three  o'clock  this  afternoon,  or  I  shall  shoot 
you  on  sight ! ' '  Quantrill  promised  to  return  the  oxen,  and  did  so  about 
four  o'clock  that  day.  —  Andreas' s  History  of  Kansas,  p.  877. 

For  Pay  of  $60.00  he  stole  a  Yoke  of  Oxen  from  me  and  kept  them 
hid  in  the  Brush  until  compelled  to  return  them  at  muzzel  of  Eifle  He 
stole  from  Mr.  Torrey  1  Pr  of  Mackinaw  Blankets  and  a  Pair  of  Navy 
Revolvers  the  Last  he  was  made  to  return  and  the  Blankets  were  found 
rotten  in  a  hollow  Log  some  time  afterwards.  —  Letter  of  H.  V.  Beeson 
to  W.  W.  Scott,  dated  Paola,  Kansas,  June  5,  1880.  The  letter  is  in  the 
Collection  of  the  author. 

The  account  written  in  the  text  was  secured  fr«m  the  children  of 
Beeson,  and  it  does  not  fully  agree  with  the  account  given  by  Andreas, 
and  it  is  possible  that  it  differs  from  that  written  by  Beeson  himself. 


QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH      69 

he  was  engaged  in  building  a  house  on  his  claim.  Quantrill, 
though,  still  continued  to  live  at  the  Torrey  cabin  a  part  of  the 
time.7 

Quantrill  wrote  his  mother  a  letter  in  July,  a  part  of  which 
has  been  copied  and  preserved.8  It  contains  little  that  can  be 
of  value  in  the  study  of  his  life,  but  it  does  show  that  he  was  of 
an  observing  turn  of  mind  and  capable  of  the  enjoyment  of  the 
beauties  of  nature.  And  it  reveals  the  fact  that  he  was  restless, 
solitary  and  unhappy,  a  condition,  which,  if  not  relieved,  was 
sure  sooner  or  later  to  become  unbearable  and  cause  abandon- 
ment of  all  restraints  imposed  by  society  and  revels  in  wild 
excesses.  In  a  character  constituted  as  was  Quantrill 's  such  a 
condition  of  mind,  if  not  remedied,  was  certain  to  result,  as  it 
did  later,  in  a  carnival  of  crime.  The  extract  is  as  follows: 

Stanton,  Kansas,  July  9th,  1857. 

It  is  too  dry  now  to  work  at  the  corn ;  this  is  why  I  have  this 
leisure  time  to  write  during  the  week.  I  have  taken  my  atlas 
and  went  to  the  bank  of  the  river  in  the  shade,  to  write.  Every- 
thing feels  and  looks  happy;  the  wood  is  full  of  birds  of  every 
kind,  seeing  which  can  sing  best  and  sweetest.  The  fish  are 
playing  in  the  water  of  the  river,  which  is  clear  as  crystal;  and 
the  squirrel  bounds  from  tree  to  tree,  till  seing  me  he  stops,  and 
after  eyeing  me  curiously,  then  scampers  on  again  till  I  almost 
envy  him  his  happiness.  I  have  but  one  wish,  and  that  is  that 
you  were  here,  for  I  cannot  be  happy  here  all  alone;  and  it 
seems  that  I  am  the  only  person  or  thing  that  is  not  happy  along 
this  beautiful  stream.  But  I  must  close  my  letter,  or  I  will 
make  you  sad ;  and  in  caring  for  three  helpless  children  you  have 
cares  enough  without  my  adding  to  them. 

Such  characters  are  always  strangers  to  that  happiness  — 
the  only  source  of  happiness  —  which  comes  from  a  sense  of 
duty  performed,  from  the  knowledge  of  an  honest  purpose  in 
life,  from  right  action  towards  fellow-men.  Quantrill  was  at 

7  There  was  some  mysterious  tie  or  connection  between  Quantrill  and 
the  Torreys.     This  relation  survived  the  Civil  War  and  cannot  be  explained. 
The  Torreys  were  always  staunch  defenders  of  Quantrill  and  his  memory. 
It  is  one  of  the  mysteries  connected  with  Quantrill 's  life. 

8  This  extract  was  copied  by  W.  W.  Scott  from  the  original  letter, 
evidently.     The  letter  is  not  known   to  be  in  existence.     The  copy  is  in 
the  Collection  of  the  author. 


70     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

the  time  a  boy,  young  man,  longing  for  happiness,  yet  daily 
violating  the  laws  of  happiness,  doing  the  very  things  which 
would  make  happiness  impossible,  constantly  forfeiting  the  con- 
fidence and  respect  of  his  friends  and  neighbors  by  indulging  in 
crime.  He  still  believed  that  despite  all  these  things  he  should 
have  been  happy.  He  came  finally  to  be  against  all  men,  believ- 
ing them  enemies,  believing  them  to  be  unreasonably  antagon- 
istic to  him,  purposely  preventing  his  attainment  of  content- 
ment and  happiness,  seeking  revenge  upon  society  for  an  imag- 
inary wrong —  for  something  amiss  within  himself,  a  malady 
which  affected  only  his  own  soul.  This  condition  becomes  more 
and  more  apparent  in  him,  as  revealed  by  his  letters,  espe- 
cially those  written  by  him  at  a  subsequent  date  while  teach- 
ing. 

Beeson  returned  to  Canal  Dover  early  in  August  to  bring 
his  family  to  Kansas.  Quantrill  was  still  enthusiastic  about  his 
mother's  moving  to  Kansas.  Beeson  carried  a  letter  to  him 
from  his  mother,  which  he  says  is  the  first  he  had  received  from 
her.  In  his  reply  he  said  he  would  go  on  a  claim  and  that  he 
intended  soon  to  leave  Torrey 's.  He  told  of  the  dissatisfaction 
of  the  families  of  Beeson  and  Torrey  with  their  new  homes  in 
Kansas.9  His  mother  must  have  warned  him  against  an  early 
marriage,  and  he  gave  her  an  assurance  that  he  was  "too  smart 
for  that."  The  letter  is  set  out  below: 

Stanton  Kansas  Territory 

August  23d  1857 
My  Dear  Mother. 

I  received  your  letter  by  Mr  Beeson  &  it  was  the  first  I  have 
received  but  I  hope  not  the  last.  The  folks  all  arrived  here 
safely ;  But  they  have  the  blues  now  awfully  there  is  not  enough 
of  city  here  for  them.  I  am  going  to  [go]  on  a  claim  in  a  few 
weeks,  &  I  will  probably  leave  Mr.  Torrey  this  week.  I  wrote  a 
letter  to  Grandfather  to  day  &  I  wrote  to  him  about  Frank  com- 
ing out  here  &  a  fine  letter  about  Kansas. 

I  think  I  shall  yet  try  to  get  a  farm.  Do  not  be  afraid  of 
me  getting  married  in  a  hurry  I  am  to[o]  smart  for  that.  I 
dont  think  I  will  see  Beesons  very  often  for  I  am  going  to  do 
for  myself  now.  I  cannot  write  you  a  long  letter  this  time  but 

9  This  is  a  beautifully  written  letter.  It  is  in  the  Collection  of  the 
author. 


QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH      71 

I  will  write  you  another  in  a  week    I  cannot  write  any  longer 
&  I  must  close. 

I  am  Well  &  hope  you  may  be  the  same. 

Yours  Truly 
Your  Son 

W.  C.  Quantrill 
The  next  letter  you  write  Direct  to  Stanton  Kansas  Territory 

At  a  later  date  he  wrote  a  letter  to  his  brother  Franklin, 
which  is  now  in  the  library  of  the  Kansas  State  Historical 
Society.10  At  that  time  he  was  evidently  expecting  to  return  to 
Canal  Dover,  as  the  letter  will  show: 

Franklin  I  have  never  answered  those  few  lines  of  yours 
yet  but  will  try  to  do  so  now.  I  am  glad  to  hear  that  you  are 
well  except  your  leg.  You  say  you  and  Thomson  are  going  to 
school.  You  ought  soon  to  be  able  to  teach  school  I  think  and 
when  I  come  home  I  think  I  will  have  you  try  it.  I  suppose 
Thomson  has  grown  to  be  quite  a  large  boy  and  when  I  come 
home  I  have  something  in  view  for  him  to  do  if  he  has  attended 
well  to  his  book  tell  him  to  study  hard  for  he  ought  to  beat  me 
almost  now  that  I  have  been  so  long  amongst  the  indians 

Your  brother 

W.  C.  Quantrill 

The  return  of  Beeson  to  Canal  Dover  for  the  purpose  of 
taking  his  family  to  Kansas  created  interest,  in  that  village,  in 
Kansas  Territory.  Some  time  in  the  following  fall  (1857)  a 
number  of  Canal  Dover  young  men  went  to  Kansas.  They  were 
all  acquaintances  and  friends  of  the  Beeson  and  Torrey  families, 
and  among  them  were  John  Diehl,  Alexander  McCartney, 
Charles  Wood,  and  George  Hildt.  They  were  all  schoolmates  of 

10  This  letter  has  no  date.  It  seems  to  have  been  written  on  a  part 
of  the  paper  of  a  letter  to  some  one  else,  probably  his  mother,  and  to  have 
been  torn  off  afterwards.  W.  W.  Scott  gave  it  to  the  Society.  Perhaps 
he  tore  it  off  the  letter  to  which  it  was  attached.  Or  Quantrill  may  have 
written  it  on  a  scrap  and  sent  it  with  a  letter  to  some  other  member  of 
the  family.  It  is  written  on  both  sides  of  a  scrap  some  two  inches  wide 
torn  from  the  bottom  of  a  sheet  of  note  paper.  It  is  quite  well  written, 
the  penmanship  being  delicate  and  regular,  much  resembling  that  of  a 
woman  of  refinement,  and  it  is  superior  to  any  other  writing  of  his,  though 
there  is  no  mistaking  it  for  the  writing  of  any  other  person.  Quantrill 
wrote  it. 


72  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Quantrill.  They  settled  on  adjoining  claims  in  what  is  now 
McCamish  township,  Johnson  county,  Kansas."  Quantrill  went 
there  with  them  and  took  a  claim.  They  built  a  cabin  on  one 
of  the  claims  in  which  they  all  lived,  and  on  each  claim  they 
erected  a  pen  or  put  up  a  few  logs  to  hold  possession  until  they 
could  break  the  land  in  the  spring.  In  memory  of  their  old 
Ohio  home  they  called  their  settlement  Tuscarora  Lake.  In 
January  Quantrill  wrote  a  letter  to  W.  W.  Scott,  who  lived  in 
Canal  Dover.12  There  are  a  number  of  vulgar  allusions  in  the 
letter,  such  as  are  found  in  none  of  his  other  letters,  and  which 
may  be  accounted  for  by  remembering  that  it  was  written  to  a 
young  man  with  whom  he  was  on  familiar  terms.  He  was  at 
4hat  time  seemingly  in  earnest  about  getting  a  farm  for  himself, 
urged  others  to  come  out  and  take  claims: 


Tuscarora  Lake 

Jan,  22d  1858 
Friend  William. 

I  have  come  to  the  conclusion  to  write  to  you  again.  You 
wrote  to  me  last  summer  &  I  answered  it  shortly  afterward; 
but,  not  having  received  one  afterwards,  I  came  to  the  conclu- 
sion that  you  had  never  received  it  ;  for  at  that  time  letters  fre- 
quently were  mislaid  &  lost. 

But  when  one  does  sit  down  to  write  here,  he  hardly  knows 
what  to  say;  for  situated  as  we  are,  (that  is  keeping  Bach,)  & 
away  from  any  town  we  are  at  more  of  a  loss  for  news  &c.  than 
you  gentlemen  in  the  city  there. 

I  have  left  Col  Torreys  &  now  live  with  the  rest  of  the  Dover 
boys  here.  George  Hildt  is  in  Dover  ere  this  &  if  you  see  him 
tell  him  we  are  all  well  &  that  the  claim  North  of  mine  was 
jumped  last  Monday  by  a  young  fellow  from  Ind. 

About  the  last  election  here  is  this  10,126  votes  against  the 
Lecompton  swindle  &  6000  for  it,  of  which  3000  if  not  more 
were  illegal.  I  saw  the  Ohio  Democrat  here  yesterday  which  had 
some  what  I  call  D  -  n  lies  about  Kansas  &  I  would  like  to  tell 
the  editor  so  to  his  face.  He  said  Jim  Lane,  (as  good  a  man  as 

1  1  From  information  given  the  author  by  Mrs.  Frances  Beeson  Thomp- 
son and  Mrs.  Isaac  N.  Sparks,  daughters  of  Beeson.  To  their  best  recollec- 
tion these  claims  were  taken  about  the  first  of  December,  1857. 

1  2  Letter  of  W.  C.  Quantrill  to  W.  W.  Scott,  now  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author.  It  is  carelessly  written  in  a  coarse  sprawling  hand,  and  must 
have  been  written  hurriedly. 


QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH  73 

we  have  here)  was  fighting  with  U.  S.  Troops  at  Fort  Scott,  he 
was  there  but  did  no  fighting ;  his  presence  is  enough  to  frighten 
100  Missourians.  The  settlers  shot  two  men  &  wounded  4  or  5 
but  in  self  defence,  it  is  a  pity  they  had  not  shot  every  Mis- 
sourian  that  was  there.  The  democrats  here  are  the  worst  men 
we  have  for  they  are  all  rascals,  for  no  one  can  be  a  democrat 
here  without  being  one;  but  the  day  of  their  death  is  fast 
approaching  &  they  will  be  like  the  jews  be  scattered  to  the  four 
winds  of  the  earth  &  a  guilty  look  which  will  always  betray  them. 

If  you  are  in  the  printing  office  yet  tell  the  editor  if  he 
wants  any  subscribers  in  Kansas  he  must  do  a  little  better  than 
he  has  done,  for  the  boys  here  will  hardly  use  it  when  they  go 
back  of  the  house. 

If  you  know  where  George  Scott  is  tell  him  to  write  to  me  or 
if  he  wants  to  get  a  farm  of  [for]  nothing  to  come  here  as  soon 
as  he  can;  for  there  are  good  chances  here  now,  tell  him  I  am 
safe  for  160  acres  of  land  &  that  I  will  insure  the  same  to  him 
if  he  comes  here  in  8  or  10  weeks;  &  you  too  Billy  $40  will 
Bring  him  here  yes  30  if  he  is  economical  &  I  will  insure  any 
one  $1.50  a  day  if  he  wants  to  work,  &  Friend  William  if  you 
want  land  here  is  the  only  place  to  get  it  cheap  &  you  had  better 
come  if  you  want  any.  Tell  George  if  he  wants  to  come,  to 
come  by  railroad  to  Jefferson  city,  Mo.  &  then  shoulder  his  car- 
pet sack  &  foot  it  to  Independence  &  from  there  to  Little  Santa 
Fe.  &  then  to  Olathe  Johnson  County  K.  T.  which  is  six  day 
walk,  if  you  see  any  Boys  around  dover  who  want  to  come  tell 
them  what  I  have  written. 

We  have  the  finest  weather  imaginable  well  to  tell  you  the 
truth  the  grass  has  been  growing  on  the  prairie  all  winter  or  dur- 
ing the  season  we  call  winter  &  we  have  no  rainy  or  wet  weather 
either. 

Last  week  I  helped  to  kill  a  deer  &  since  I  have  been  here  I 
have  killed  myself  2  antelope  &  one  deer  &  about  25  Wild  Tur- 
keys &  geese  &  before  you  see  me  in  Ohio  I  will  have  killed  buf- 
falo for  they  are  plenty  about  100  miles  west  of  us  now  &  those 
who  have  killed  them  say  it  is  fine  sport  at  least  if  I  keep  my 
health  I  will  try  it.  This  is  the  place  to  hunt  there  is  more  game 
to  be  seen  in  one  day  here  than  in  a  whole  year  there. 

About  the  girls  I  cannot  say  as  much  as  you  could  but  this 
is  certain  a  man  can  have  his  choice  for  we  have  all  kinds  & 
colors  here  Black  White  &  Ked  But  to  tell  you  which  I  like  the 
best  is  a  mixture  of  the  two  latter  colors  if  properly  brought  up 
for  they  are  both  rich  and  good  looking  &  I  think  go  ahead  of 
your  Dover  gals  far  enough.  Em  Walton  would  pass  very  well 
for  a  squaw  if  she  was  better  looking  but  I  think  from  present 


V 

V 


i-.-  ;t.  „  .  .  *•* 


74  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

appearances  John  Diehl  will  squaw  her  about  next  fall  or  winter 
&  that  will  bleach  her  a  little  probably.  When  you  write  tell 
me  all  about  the  girls  &  especially  yours  &  my  fair  one  that  used 
to  be  in  years  past,  if  she  is  around  yet.  You  and  the  rest  of  the 
boys  there  must  attend  to  the  girls  well  while  we  are  here  in  Kan- 
sas, &  tell  them  we  are  all  going  to  marry  squaws  &  when  they 
die  we  are  coming  to  old  Dover  for  our  second  wives  so  that 
they  must  not  despair. 

I  must  close.  Now  write  soon  give  me  all  the  news  my  love 
to  the  boys  &  girls  &  oblige 

Your  obedient  S. 

W.  C.  Quantrill 

These  young  men  always  spent  Sunday  at  the  house  of 
Beeson,  going  there  on  Saturday  evening.  Quantrill  went  with 
them,  and  usually  went  on  to  the  house  of  Bennings;  at  other 
times  he  stopped  with  the  Torreys.  This  continued  until  well 
along  into  the  spring  of  1858,  when  the  others  came  down  one 
Saturday  evening  without  Quantrill.  They  had  driven  him  out 
of  their  camp  for  stealing.  When  the  weather  became  mild  in 
the  spring  they  began  to  miss  their  blankets.  Some  one  was 
stealing  their  provisions  also.  Quantrill  had  been  loudest  in 
his  condemnation  of  the  thieves  and  had  even  played  detective 
and  accused  some  settlers  on  Cedar  creek.  But  his  actions 
brought  suspicion  upon  himself.  The  boys  said  nothing  at  the 
time,  but  kept  watch.  They  sodn  caught  Quantrill  stealing 
some  provisions,  clothing,  and  a  pistol.  They  made  inquiry  of 
other  settlers  and  found  their  blankets,  and  the  settlers  said 
they  had  been  buying  provisions  from  Quantrill  all  winter  and 
had  bought  the  blankets  from  him  in  the  spring.  The  boys  were 
so  disgusted  with  him  that  they  forced  him  to  leave  the  camp, 
not  wishing  to  punish  him  because  of  his  mother  and  his  having 
grown  up  with  them.  He  was  gone  two  or  three  weeks,  when  he 
returned  to  Stanton  and  again  took  up  his  abode  with  Bennings. 
But  he  was  in  bad  repute  and  soon  went  to  Fort  Leavenworth. 
There  he  attached  himself  to  a  provision  train  bound  for  Utah 
with  supplies  for  the  army  taken  out  the  previous  summer  to 
subdue  the  Mormons.  He  claimed  to  have  accompanied  this 
train  in  the  capacity  of  a  herder  or  teamster.  If  he  had  any 
position  at  all  it  must  have  been  in  some  roustabout  capacity. 


75 

R.  M.  Peck,  in  The  National  Tribune,  September  22,  1904,  says 
he  was  a  hanger-on  following  the  army,  and  that  he  was  one  of 
the  most  reckless  and  successful  gamblers  in  the  camp  at  Fort 
Bridger.1  a  The  particulars  of  Quantrill's  trip  across  the  Plains 

13  He  was  then  known  as  Charley  Hart.  E.  M.  Peck,  now  (1909)  of 
Whittier,  California,  saw  Quantrill  at  Tort  Bridger  and  witnessed  one  of 
his  gambling  exploits,  which  he  believes  was  in  June,  1858: 

I  was  a  soldier  in  one  of  the  two  companies  of  1st  Cav.  that  formed 
a  part  of  the  command  of  Lieut.  Col.  Wm.  Hoffman,  6th  Inf.,  which  com- 
mand was  sent  out  from  Fort  Leavenworth  early  in  the  spring  of  '58  to 
escort  several  trains  —  some  mule  teams  and  some  of  oxen  —  loaded  with 
supplies  for  the  command  of  Brvt.  Brig.  Gen.  Albert  Sidney  Johnston, 
Commanding  the  Mormon  Expedition,  who  had  been  snowed  in  all  winter  at 
Port  Bridger.  or  Camp  Scott,  as  it  was  officially  designated. 

We  arrived  at  Camp  Scott  in  the  first  days  of  June.  A  paymaster 
who  had  followed  us  arrived  about  the  same  time  and  paid  the  soldiers 
off.  As  there  were  few  ways  of  spending  the  money  outside  of  Judge 
Carter's  sutler  store,  where  prices  were  outrageously  high,  during  the  few 
days  that  intervened  between  our  arrival  at  Fort  Bridger  and  the  depart- 
ure of  Gen.  Johnston's  forces  for  Salt  Lake  City,  gambling  was  rife 
throughout  the  camp,  and,  as  usually  happens,  in  a  short  time,  a  few  sharp- 
ers had  nearly  all  the  soldiers'  money. 

Amony  the  celebrites  of  the  camp  I  had  frequently  heard  the  name 
of  Charley  Hart  mentioned,  whose  notoriety  seemed  to  be  derived  from  his- 
reckless  bettings  and  phenomenal  winnings.  I  heard  it  stated  that  he  had 
come  out  from  Kansas  with  Gen.  Johnston's  troops  the  previous  fall, 
working  as  a  teamster  in  one  of  the  six-mule  trains. 

While  sauntering  through  a  big  gambling  tent  a  day  or  so  after  pay- 
day, watching  the  fluctuations  of  fortune  at  the  various  tables  where 
chance  games  were  being  operated,  I  heard  some  one  remark,  "There 
comes  Charley  Hart",  and  having  heard  his  fame  as  a  wild  plunger  in 
gambling,  I  took  a  good  look  at  him.  I  could  see  nothing  heroic  in  his 
appearance,  but  considerable  of  the  rowdy,  as  I  now  recall  the  impression 
I  then  got  of  him. 

He  was  apparently  about  twenty-two  or  twenty- three  years  of  age; 
about  five  feet  ten  inches  in  height;  with  an  ungraceful,  slouchy  walk; 
and  by  no  means  prepossessing  in  features.  He  had  evidently  been  patron- 
izing Judge  Carter's  store,  since  he  "struck  it  rich,"  for  his  clothes  all 
seemed  new.  A  pair  of  high-heeled  calf -skin  boots  of  small  size;  bottoms 
of  trousers  tucked  into  boot-tops;  a  navy  pistol  swinging  from  his  waist 
belt;  a  fancy  blue  flannel  shirt;  no  coat;  a  colored  silk  handkerchief  tied 
loosely  around  his  neck;  yellow  hair  hanging  nearly  to  the  shoulders; 
topped  out  by  the  inevitable  cow-boy  hat.  This  is  the  picture  of  Charley 
Hart  as  my  memory  presents  him  now. 

As  he  entered  the  tent  he  carried  in  his  left  hand  a  colored  silk 
handkerchief,  gathered  by  the  four  corners,  which  apparently  contained 
coin.  Advancing  to  one  of  the  tables  where  the  operator,  or  banker,  as 
the  dealer  of  a  chance  game  is  usually  called,  was  dealing  "Monte",  he 
set  the  handkerchief  on  the  table  and  opened  it  out,  showing  the  contents- 
to  be  gold  coins,  and  seemingly  in  bulk  about  equal  to  the  stacks  of  gold 
coins  tiered  up  on  the  table  in  front  of  the  banker. 

Hart  then  asked,  "Take  a  tap,  pard?"  meaning  would  the  banker  ac- 
cept a  bet  of  Hart's  pile  against  the  dealer's,  on  the  turn  of  a  card.     The 


76  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

are  not  known.  "Whether  he  went  directly  from  Fort  Leaven- 
worth  to  Utah,  or  whether  he  loitered  in  the  camps  along  the 
California  Trail  to  ply  his  profession  of  gambler  until  late  in 
the  summer,  and  then  crossed  over  to  Utah,  we  do  not  know. 
We  know  from  his  letters  that  he  was  at  South  Pass  on  the  third 
day  of  September,  1858,  and  that  he  went  on  to  Utah  and  was 
there  until  the  spring  of  1859.  All  of  this  year  1858,  after  he 
left  Stanton  (about  the  first  of  May),  was  spent  in  Utah  or  on 
the  road  thither.  He  arrived  at  Salt  Lake  City  about  the  first 

banker  accepted  the  challenge,  shuffled  the  cards,  passed  the  deck  to  Hart 
to  cut,  then  threw  out  the  "lay-out"  of  six  cards,  in  a  ' ' column-of -twos " 
style.  Hart  then  set  his  handkerchief  of  gold  on  a  card,  at  the  same  time 
drawing  his  pistol,  "Just  to  insure  fair  play,"  he  remarked,  seeing  that 
the  banker  had  his  gun  lying  on  the  table  convenient  to  his  right  hand. 
Keeping  his  eye  on  the  banker's  hands,  to  make  sure  that  the  deal  was 
done  "on  the  square",  Hart  said,  "Now  deal." 

Turning  the  deck  face  up  the  banker  drew  the  cards  off  successively. 
Hart's  card  won.  As  the  dealer  looked  up  with  a  muttered  oath  he  found 
himself  looking  into  the  muzzle  of  Hart's  pistol. 

' '  Back  out ' ',  said  Hart  quietly.  ' '  Don 't  even  touch  your  pistol.  I  '11 
give  it  back  to  you  when  I  rake  in  the  pot." 

The  banker  did  as  directed,  while  Hart,  without  showing  any  nervous- 
ness, still  holding  his  pistol  in  one  hand,  reached  across  the  table  and  with 
the  other  arm  swept  the  banker's  money  and  pistol  over  to  him.  Picking 
out  the  twenties,  tens,  fives  and  two-and-a-half  pieces,  he  tossed  them  into 
his  handkerchief.  There  still  remained  on  the  table  about  a  double  hand- 
full  of  small  silver,  (there  were  very  few  silver  dollars  in  circulation  then, 
the  little  one-dollar  gold  pieces  being  largely  used  in  their  stead),  and  a 
handfull  of  gold  dollars.  Sweeping  this  small  stuff  into  his  hands,  Hart 
said,  "I  don't  carry  such  chicken  feed  as  that,"  as  he  tossed  the  small 
coins  up  in  the  air  and  let  the  crowd  scramble  for  them. 

Then  handing  the  dejected  looking  banker  his  pistol  and  a  twenty- 
dollar  gold  piece,  he  said:  "There,  pard,  is  a  stake  for  you,"  and  gather- 
ing up  his  plethoric  handkerchief,  he  meandered  on  seeking  new  banks  to 
"bust." 

The  next  day,  so  I  was  told,  Hart's  marvelous  luck  deserted  him,  and 
he  lost  every  dollar  he  had;  and  after  trying  in  vain  to  "strike  it  up 
again",  he  became  discouraged  and  disgusted  with  gambling,  joined  some 
outfit  going  back  to  the  states,  and  went  back  to  Kansas  dead  broke. 

I  never  heard  the  name  Quantrill  used  till  the  summer  of  '61,  when 
his  depredations  along  the  borders  of  Missouri  and  Kansas  were  bringing 
the  name  into  unpleasant  notoriety.  I  then  heard  that  Quantrill,  the 
bloody-handed  guerrilla  leader,  and  Charley  Hart,  the  reckless  gambler  of 
Fort  Bridger,  were  identical. 

This  letter  is  dated,  Whittier,  California,  November  6,  1907,  and 
is  addressed  to  the  author,  and  is  now  in  his  Collection.  In  a  later  letter 
to  the  author,  Mr.  Peck  says  that  it  was  in  June  that  he  first  saw  Charley 
Hart  at  Fort  Bridger  in  1858.  This  is  possibly  an  error;  it  may  have  been 
later.  Mr.  Peck  served  in  the  Union  army  along  the  border  of  Missouri 
and  Kansas  during  the  Civil  War. 


QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH  77 

of  October,  and  he  wrote  from  that  point  to  his  mother  on  the 
15th.1*  It  was  his  intention  to  go  on  to  the  Colville  gold  mines 
in  Canada  in  the  spring  of  1859,  but  this  he  did  not  do.  The 
letter  to  his  mother  is  as  follows: 

Great  Salt  Lake  City. 

Oct.  15th  1858 
My  Dear  Mother. 

I  have  wrote  to  you  several  times  since  I  started  across  the 
plains,  but  I  never  have  had  a  letter  yet,  but  I  do  not  care  so 
much  if  you  know  where  I  am  and  know  that  I  am  well  and 
doing  well.  I  arrived  here  about  two  weeks  ago,  and  I  was 
never  so  surprised  in  my  life  as  I  was  to  find  a  people  living 
here  in  large  cities  and  towns  and  farming  the  lands  here,  which, 
without  their  untiring  labor,  would  be  a  desert  producing  neither 
grass  nor  timber,  nothing  but  a  few  stunted  weeds;  but  they 
have  converted  it  into  fine  farms  and  gardens,  by  ditching  from 
the  mountain  streams  and  watering  the  whole  country.  You  go 
in  their  towns  and  cities  and  you  find  the  purest  and  clearest  of 
spring  water  coming  from  the  snow  capped  mountains,  and  run- 
ning on  either  side  of  the  streets  and  through  their  lots  in  small 
but  rapid  streams,  carrying  off  the  filth  &  keeping  every  thing 
fresh  as  it  was  when  spring  first  opened.  They  are  an  indus- 
trious people  and  all  hold  to  their  religion  in  a  manner  which 
shows  no  hypocrisy,  and  I  think  their  morals  are  as  good  as 
any  people  I  have  met  with  in  my  travels. 

I  have  not  seen  Brigham  Young  yet,  as  he  has  to  keep 
indoors  since  the  war  on  account  of  some  of  the  threats  made  by 
some  of  the  Mormons  &  Gentiles  and  of  course  they  have  no 
religious  services  &  therefore  I  have  had  no  chance  to  learn  much 
of  their  religion.  But  there  is  this  about  it  I  believe  they  are 
not  half  so  bad  as  they  want  to  make  out,  at  least  there  is  very 
little  of  it  shown  now,  &  I  have  been  in  about  12  or  15  of  their 
towns  and  cities,  they  are  scattered  for  300  miles  south  of  Salt 
Lake  in  the  valley,  in  towns,  from  10  to  15  miles  apart.  They 
settle  in  this  way  to  defend  themselves  from  the  Indians.  They 
held  an  agricultural  fair  since  I  have  been  here,  in  the  city,  and 
I  was  never  so  agreeably  surprised,  for  it  equaled  any  of  our 
county  fairs  in  every  thing  except  fine  horses,  and  cattle,  and 
peaches,  apples,  plums,  grapes,  &  indeed  all  kinds  of  fruits  and 
vegetables  equaled  and  in  some  instances  far  surpassed  any 
thing  in  the  east  that  ever  I  had  seen ;  especially  the  vegetables, 
onions  as  large  as  a  saucer,  potatoes,  beets,  radishes,  carrots, 

14  The  original  of  this  letter  is  lost.  W.  W.  Scott  made  a  copy  of  it, 
which  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 


78  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

parsnips,  &c.,  were  larger  than  any  I  had  ever  seen;  and  then 
the  needle  work  was  very  fine,  and  the  picture  gallery  was 
splendid  &  the  specimens  of  their  manufactures  were  very  fine 
indeed,  &  then  a  very  fine  brass  band  &  string  band  entertained 
us  an  hour  or  so  every  half  day  very  agreeably,  &  indeed  I  am 
so  well  pleased  that  I  shall  stay  with  them  this  winter  at  least. 
I  am  going  to  apply  for  a  school  and  I  think  I  can  obtain  one, 
they  pay  from  $50  to  $60  per  month  &  I  think  that  will  pay 
for  one  winter  at  least. 

The  soldiers  are  camped  about  45  miles  from  the  city  in 
Cedar  Valley,  they  are  having  some  trouble  with  the  Indians 
but  none  in  the  least  with  the  Mormons. 

I  am  going  in  the  spring  to  the  Colville  gold  mines  in  Can- 
ada, north  of  Oregon  Territory  which  they  say  are  equal  to  the 
California ;  at  least  so  says  a  friend  of  mine  whom  I  knew  in  the 
States  &  who  has  been  there  but  had  to  cease  operations  on 
account  of  the  Indians;  but  Government  will  send  troops  there 
early  in  the  spring,  and  are  hiring  men  to  go  with  them  now  so 
as  to  be  all  ready  when  spring  opens. 

There  has  been  no  cold  weather  in  the  valley  yet,  but  it 
has  snowed  considerable  in  the  mountains  for  a  month  back,  and 
indeed  I  was  caught  in  a  severe  snow-storm  on  the  South  Pass 
in  the  Rocky  Mountains  on  the  3rd  day  of  September;  &  it 
snowed  hard  all  day,  and  froze  ice  from  an  inch  to  two  inches 
thick  in  our  buckets  for  a  week  afterwards.  There  has  been  no 
frost  in  the  valley  yet ;  or,  indeed,  they  never  have  dew  or  frost, 
but  when  it  comes  cold  it  commences  to  snow,  and  for  that  rea- 
son it  is  very  healthy. 

You  need  not  expect  me  home  till  you  see  me  there,  but  bear 
in  mind  that  I  will  do  what  is  right,  take  care  of  myself,  try 
to  make  a  fortune  honestly,  which  I  think  I  can  do  in  a  year 
or  two.  I  will  always  let  you  know  where  I  am  &  how  I  am 
doing  &  by  the  next  mail  I  will  send  you  my  picture  as  I 
appeared  in  camp  coming  out  here,  and  also  a  letter.  I  have 
given  up  long  ago  thinking  my  Grandfather  will  help  me,  & 
that  is  why  I  am  here  to  make  my  fortune  for  the  poorest  laborer 
can  command  $40  per  month  &  I  think  I  can  do  more.  I  have 
not  missed  a  meals  victuals  since  I  left  Kansas,  and  I  weighed 
when  I  came  to  the  city  171  Ibs.,  so  that  you  may  not  be  afraid 
of  my  losing  my  health.  I  have  got  rid  of  that  trouble  in  my 
throat.  I  am  not  thinking  of  getting  married  yet,  although 
every  man  here  has  from  5  to  8  wives,  &  the  rich  have  from  12 
to  20  &  Brigham  has  at  present  43.  I  will  send  you  some  of  the 
Mormon  papers  when  I  can  obtain  them.  Adieu 

Your  Son 

W.  C.  Quantrill 


QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH  79 

Direct  to 

Great  Salt  Lake  City 
Utah  Territory 

Mrs.  C.  C.  Quantrill 

In  this  letter  Quantrill  was  evidently  deceiving  his  mother, 
writing  to  her  as  a  green  country  boy  on  a  trip  to  his  county 
seat  might  write.  He  was  living  one  life  and  giving  her  the 
impression  that  he  was  living  another.  The  reckless  gambling, 
the  rough  language,  the  proficiency  with  the  revolver  were 
none  of  them  mentioned.  His  companions  were  neither  men- 
tioned nor  described.  Adolphus  Y.  Bennings  was  with  him. 
Upton  Hays,  later  associated  with  Quantrill  in  the  guerrilla 
warfare  along  the  border,  and  other  young  men  from  western 
Missouri  who  rode  by  the  moon  with  him  along  the  Blue  and 
the  Sni,  bent  on  blood,  roistered  and  gambled  with  him  along 
the  Oregon  Trail  and  in  the  valleys  of  the  Saints. 

Quantrill  suffered  from  an  attack  of  mountain  fever,  which 
he  described  in  a  letter  to  his  mother.  js  He  told  her  he  was  to 
go  to  work  as  a  clerk  for  the  quartermaster  of  the  army  at  $50 
per  month,  and  that  he  would  not  return  home  without  some 
money. 

Great  Salt  Lake  City 

Dec  1st  1858. 
My  Dear  Mother. 

I  am  again  seated  to  write  a  few  lines,  which  I  should  have 
done  some  time  ago,  but  it  was  not  in  my  power  to  do  so  any 
sooner  on  account  of  my  having  been  very  sick  for  about  3  weeks 
with  what  is  called  mountain  fever  a  dangerous  disease,  which 
debilitates  a  person  very  soon,  but  once  having  broke  the  dis- 
ease a  person  gains  very  rapidly,  for  the  last  two  weeks  I  have 
had  such  an  appetite  as  hardly  could  be  satisfied  but  I  am  very 
careful  not  to  eat  too  much  I  feel  very  well  at  present,  the 
Mormons  here  have  treated  me  very  well  much  better  than  I 
could  have  expected  after  their  disturbance  with  what  they  call 
the  Gentiles.  Next  week  I  am  going  to  clerk  for  the  Quarter 
Master  in  the  army  at  $50  per  month  which  is  no  more  than 
25  at  home  I  am  so  nervous  that  I  can  not  write  worth  a  cent. 

i  s  Letter  of  Quantrill  to  his  mother.  This  letter  is  in  the  Collection 
of  the  author.  It  is  poorly  written  and  shows  that  he  was  suffering  from 
the  effects  of  the  disease  at  the  time. 


80     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

I  can 't  tell  when  I  will  be  home.  I  am  not  coming  home  without 
some  money.  I  will  take  care  of  myself.  Give  my  love  to  all. 
If  any  thing  is  done  with  our  property  you  take  my  share 

Your  Son 

W.  C.  Quantrill 
Direct  to  Salt  Lake  City 

Utah  Territory 

It  is  more  than  probable  that  he  had  no  intention  of  going 
to  work  for  the  quartermaster,  and  in  his  next  letter  he  said 
that  he  had  lost  the  place  through  his  own  fault,  and  that  he 
was  employed  as  cook  for  a  mess  of  twenty-five  men.16  He 
wrote  from  Camp  Floyd,  and  if  he  was  cooking  at  all  it  was 
most  likely  for  some  mess  of  hangers-on  like  himself: 

Camp  Floyd 

Jan  9th  1859. 
My  Dear  Mother. 

I  again  sit  down  to  write  a  few  lines  to  you  without  having 
yet  had  a  letter  from  you  since  I  have  been  here,  the  last  letter 
I  wrote  to  you  was  immediately  after  I  had  got  up  from  a  sick 
bed  but  now  I  am  as  well  &  hearty  as  ever,  if  not  more  so.  I 
had  rather  a  hard  time  of  it  then  but  it  was  all  my  own  fault 
That  throwed  me  out  of  employment  in  the  dead  of  winter  in  one 
of  the  worst  countries  in  the  world  for  a  case  like  mine  I  have 
been  cooking  for  a  mess  of  about  25  men  for  some  time  untill  I 
can  get  a  situation  in  government,  which  I  have  good  recome[n]- 
dations  for  (as  soon  as  a  vacancy  occurs,)  from  some  of  the 
head  men  in  the  camp,  do  not  greeve  any  more  than  possible 
about  me  for  I  will  surprise  you  some  of  these  days  which  will 
be  worth  something  dont  fear.  I  have  a  notion  to  marry  4  or 
5  women  here  if  I  can  for  here  is  the  only  place  I  will  ever  have 
a  chance  I  expect,  the  Mormons  have  from  3  to  8  on  an  average. 
They  are  a  very  ignorant  set  of  people  generally  &  generally 
great  rogues  &  rascals  thinking  nothing  to  be  to[o]  bad  to  do 
to  a  gentile  as  they  call  us  &  I  must  say  that  the  gentiles  are 
generally  the  same  way.  It  is  drawing  to  what  is  called  tattoo 
in  camp  that  is  when  all  lights  are  put  out  &  they  go  to  bed  & 
the  sentinel  does  not  let  any  one  pass  him  after  that  time.  Now 
I  must  close  give  my  love  to  all  &  do  not  dispair. 

Your  Son 

W.  C.  Quantrill 
Direct  to  Salt  Lake  city 

1 6  This  letter  of  Quantrill  to  his  mother  is  in  the  Collection  of  the 
author.  It  is  carelessly  and  hurriedly  written  and  is  brief. 


QUANTEILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH      81 

After  this  letter  nothing  was  heard  of  Quantrill  for  more 
than  six  months.  Some  part  of  his  adventures  during  that  time 
is  referred  to  in  a  letter  to  his  mother  written  from  Lawrence, 
Kansas,  30th  July,  1859. ' 7  He  had  made  another  one  of  his 
erratic  moves,  one  of  his  unexpected  and  lightning-like  changes. 
He  was  drifting  aimlessly  about  with  no  plans.  The  old  rumors 
of  a  man  murdered,  perhaps  more  than  one,  on  this  trip  fol- 
lowed him  back  from  the  canons  across  the  Plains  and  would 
not  down.  And  pinned  to  his  next  letter,  in  the  handwriting  of 
W.  W.  Scott,  is  the  following  note: 

The  incident  mentioned  in  this  letter,  furnished  Quantrill 
with  the  foundation  for  the  yarn  he  gave  the  Confederate  side 
as  his  excuse  for  betraying  his  three  comrades  Morrison,  Lipsey 
and  [Ball]  to  their  death,  and  his  flopping  from  a  Union  man  to 
a  rebel.  He  told  the  Southern  side  that  he  was  on  his  way  thro 
Kans  to  Pike's  Peak  with  his  brother  and  team;  and  that  the 
Kans  Jayhawkers  surprised  them,  murdered  his  brother,  shot 
him  thro  the  leg,  and  took  the  team  and  outfit. 

When  he  would  deceive  a  community  as  to  his  motives, 
when  bloody-handed  and  guilty,  thrice  guilty,  of  murder,  he 
stood  in  the  presence  of  strangers  who  could  not  comprehend 
his  traitorous  action,  he  turned  to  his  adventures  on  the  Plains, 
and  from  them  evolved  a  lie  as  black  as  midnight  which  he 
hoped  would  save  his  guilty  neck  and  slander  a  people,  a  State. 

Lawrence  July  30th/59. 
My  Dear  Mother. 

It  has  been  some  time  since  I  wrote  to  you,  and  I  am  now 
a  long  ways  distant  from  the  place  I  last  wrote  to  you.  I  have 
seen  some  pretty  hard  &  scaly  times,  both  from  cold  weather  & 
starvation  &  the  Indians  &  I  am  one  of  7  out  of  a  party  of  19 
who  started  from  Salt  Lake  city  for  the  Gold  Mines  of  Pikes 
Peak,  which  are  talked  of  all  over  the  country  &  undoubtedly 
the  Humbug  of  all  Humbugs;  I  say  so  because  I  spent  two 
months  in  the  Gold  region  haveing  my  own  experience  &  that  of 
a  number  with  whom  I  was  acquainted  to  prove  it  conclusively. 

17  The  original  letter  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  It  is  fair- 
ly well  written,  though  not  so  full  as  we  could  wish.  He  could  have  made 
the  work  of  the  historian  so  much  more  satisfactory  by  lifting  the  veil 
just  a  little  more. 

6 


82  QUANTEILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

there  is  more  or  less  gold  scattered  over  a  country  about  40 
[miles]  in  width  riming  from  the  mountains  east  &  about  200 
[miles]  long  running  with  the  mountains  but  not  in  quantities 
paying  of  1.00  per  day  in  the  best  diggings.  I  dug  out  $54.34  & 
worked  47  days  which  money  hardly  paid  my  board  and  ex- 
penses. 

I  am  now  in  Lawrence  after  having  spent  over  $300  & 
many  a  day  &  night  when  I  expected  either  to  be  killed  or  freeze 
to  death  &  at  last  when  nearly  in  the  settlements  to  have  my 
horse  and  all  taken  from  me  &  a  companion  of  mine  shot  in 
3  different  places  &  left  for  dead  &  all  that  saved  my  head  was 
I  was  out  hunting  away  from  the  camp  about  a  mile  and  a  half 

6  hearing  the  firing  hurried  to  camp  in  time  to  see  the  indians 
driving  off  our  horses  &  my  friend  lying  on  the  ground  ap- 
parently dead  but  still  breathing  with  difficulty  having  been 
shot  3  times,  his  leg  broke  below  the  knee  shot  in  the  thigh  with 

7  iron  slugs  &  last  shot  through  the  body  with  an  arrow  which 
I  first  thought  would  kill  him  but  he  lives  yet  &  if  taken  care  of 
properly  will  be  as  well  as  ever  in  6  or  8  weeks.     I  hardly 
know  what  to  do  at  present  nor  where  to  go  but  in  my  next  letter 
I  will  be  able  to  tell  you  some  more    I  think  my  friend  &  myself 
will  make  government  pay  us  for  our  losses  by  the  Indians  if 
possible  when  he  gets  well    You  would  hardly  know  me  if  you 
were  to  see  me  I  am  so  weather  beaten  &  rough  looking  that 
every  body  says  I  am  about  25  years  of  age     I  expect  every 
body  thinks  &  talks  hard  about  [me]  but  I  cannot  help  it  now 
it  will  be  all  straight  before  another  winter  passes.     I  must 
bring  my  letter  to  a  close  by  saying  that  I  am  well,  &  my  love 
to  all. 

Your  Son 

W.  C.  Quantrill 
Direct  to  Osawatomie 
Lykins  Co 

K.  T. 

Nothing  has  developed  to  indicate  who  was  his  companion. 
Taking  his  own  statement,  twelve  of  his  compaions  died  from 
some  cause,  and  the  odor  of  murder  came  in  from  the  Rocky 
Mountains  with  him.  He  felt  that  his  mother  knew  the  estima- 
tien  in  which  he  was  held  and  the  hard  talk  afloat  about  him 
and  said  he  could  not  help  it  then.  Whether  he  killed  a  man  or 
men  in  the  Pike's  Peak  gold  regions  may  never  be  known.  In 
his  later  letters  he  described  some  of  his  adventures  in  mining 
for  gold.  That  is  all  that  can  be  positively  charged  to  him  now 


QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH  83 

—  all  that  can  be  known  at  this  time  of  that  most  mysterious 
life  in  those  dim  days  in  the  snowy  gulches  and  on  the  hazy 
plains  sweeping  up  to  the  foot  of  the  Rocky  Mountains. 

Quantrill  returned  to  the  vicinity  of  his  first  haunts  in 
Kansas.  He  requested  that  his  mail  be  directed  to  Osawatomie. 
When  he  went  there  is  not  known.  What  he  did  there,  if  any 
thing,  before  the  following  winter,  there  is  nothing  to  tell.  He 
may  have  joined  in  raids  into  Missouri  to  free  slaves  and  carry 
out  loot  and  plunder,  and  he  probably  did  that.  About  this  time 
he  began  to  play  detective  both  for  his  own  interests  and  for  hire. 
At  Osawatomie  it  is  said  that  he  raided  Kansas  as  well  as  Mis- 
souri, robbing  wherever  the  opportunity  offered,  living  a  sort  of 
double  life,  a  border-ruffian  in  Missouri  and  a  Jayhawker  in 
Kansas.  There  he  made  the  acquaintance  of  Jennison  and  the 
Snyders  and  other  radical  anti-slavery  men.  Some  of  these  were 
ranging  up  and  down  the  Marias  des  Cygnes,  occasionally  prey- 
ing on  the  pro-slavery  settlers  and  sometimes  shooting  or  hang- 
ing them,  and  it  must  be  said  that  some  of  them  needed  shooting 
or  hanging  very  much,  while  others  of  them  were  splendid  men, 
good  settlers  earnestly  striving  to  build  homes  for  themselves 
and  families;  these  were  rarely  molested.  They  remained  in 
Kansas ;  some  of  them  went  into  the  Union  army ;  many  of  them 
came  to  take  an  active  interest  in  building  the  State  when  the 
war  was  over  and  are  to-day  among  its  foremost  citizens. 

More  than  two  years  before  he  had  arrived  in  Kansas  with 
opportunities  equal  to  any  other  young  man  in  the  rising  new 
territory.  But  he  accomplished  nothing.  If  he  brought  in  a 
good  name  with  him  he  had  forfeited  it.  He  was  branded  as  a 
thief  and  robber,  and  the  rumors  of  murder  committed  by  him 
would  not  be  silenced.  He  was  a  vagrant.  He  had  no  occupa- 
tion, no  visible  means  of  support.  He  would  not  apply  himself, 
was  given  to  sudden  and  unexpected  changes,  mysterious  appear- 
ances and  disappearances.  He  was  sliding  rapidly  down  the 
scale  of  morality  to  the  inevitable  consequences  of  his  course  — 
total  depravity.18 

[The  author  attended  the  reunion  of  the  guerrillas  who 
served  under  Quantrill  held  at  Independence,  Mo.,  August 

1 8  The  character  of  helpers,  teamsters,  herders,  roustabouts,  and  hang- 


84     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

20-21,  1909.  There  he  formed  the  acquaintance  of  J.  B.  For- 
bis,  a  young  man  who  lives  in  the  town.  Mr.  Forbis  said 
there  was  a  man  living  in  Independence  named  Chiles  who 
was  an  army  contractor  at  Fort  Leavenworth  in  1858.  Mr. 
Chiles  had  to  deliver  eighteen  hundred  cattle  at  Fort  Laramie 
that  spring.  While  hiring  herders  three  men  were  turned 
over  to  him  by  some  one.  They  wanted  work,  and  he  hired 

ers-on  who  went  out  to  Utah  in  the  summer  of  1858  may  be  found  fully 
described  in  Five  Tears  a  Dragoon,  by  P.  G.  Lowe,  beginning  at  page  302 : 

The  conditions  of  Colonel  Johnston's  army  were  such  that  the  Gov- 
ernment saw  the  necessity  of  moving  other  commands  to  the  front  as 
promptly  as  possible.  Great  numbers  of  horses  and  mules  were  purchased 
at  Fort  Leavenworth,  many  of  the  latter  unbroken,  and  the  task  of  organiz- 
ing and  breaking  in  trains  fit  to  transport  supplies  for  troops  in  the  field 
was  no  small  matter. 

At  Two  Mile  Creek,  below  the  fort,  were  located  extensive  corrals 
and  a  "catching-out"  crew  under  experienced  "mule  tamers",  and  here 
all  mules  were  first  hitched  to  wagons  and  sent  to  camp  some  place  within 
a  few  miles  of  the  post. 

Mr.  Levi  Wilson,  general  superintendent  of  transportation  at  Fort 
Leavenworth,  was  the  most  efficient  man  I  ever  saw  in  the  Government 
transportation  line,  but  his  services  were  required  inspecting  horses  and 
mules  from  the  middle  of  March  to  the  last  of  May,  1858. 

I  was  notified  to  wind  up  the  feeding  business,  and  bring  over  mules 
from  Platte  the  first  of  April,  which  I  did.  Three  trains  had  been  organized 
and  camped  in  Salt  Creek  Valley.  The  news  that  many  men  would  be 
needed  brought  them  from  every  direction;  some,  enterprising  young  men 
from  the  country,  ambitious  to  better  their  condition  or  work  their  way 
to  the  Pacific  Coast;  but  there  seemed  an  over-supply  of  the  oflf-scour- 
ings  of  the  slums  —  men  leaving  their  country  for  their  country 's  good. 
The  variety  and  makeup  of  these  fellows,  many  of  them  fleeing  from 
justice,  the  arms  they  carried  and  their  outfits  generally,  were  curious 
enough. 

I  was  instructed  to  take  charge  of  the  trains.  Many  complaints  had 
come  to  Mr.  Wilson  against  a  train  in  the  Valley,  and  he  requested  me 
to  see  to  it  and  do  whatever  seemed  best.  I  rode  out  and  found  a  drunken 
mob  —  mules  scattered,  harness  in  the  mud,  etc.  The  wagonmaster  was 
asleep.  A  mouthy  fellow  called  him  "Captain,"  and  he  finally  crawled 
out.  In  a  few  minutes  I  saw  the  utter  uslessness  of  wasting,  time.  He 
had  come  with  a  railroad  gang  from  North  Missouri,  the  most  blear-eyed, 
God-forsaken  looking  set  I  ever  saw.  I  told  him  that  he  and  his  men  were 
wanted  at  the  quartermaster's  office;  that  they  should  take  all  their  be- 
were  numerous,  but  I  quietly  cut  them  off,  and  in  half  an  hour  they  were 
strung  out,  poor  wretches,  with  the  "Captain"  in  the  lead.  I  promised 
to  meet  them  at  the  quartermaster's  office,  and  then  rode  down  the  creek 
a  mile  to  another  train,  and  asked  the  wagonmaster  to  give  me  his  as- 
sistant, a  fine  young  fellow  (Green  Dorsey),  and  loan  me  half  of  his  men. 
With  them  I  returned  to  the  drunken  train,  told  Dorsey  to  take  charge  as 
wagonmaster,  hire  any  man  that  came  who  suited  him,  and  I  would  send 
him  more,  but  not  to  hire  any  of  the  old  gang,  and  galloped  to  the  post 
in  time  to  see  them  paid  off.  It  was  remarked  at  the  office  that  such  an 
outfit  had  never  before  been  seen  there.  I  called  the  "Captain"  and  his 


QUANTRILL  IN  KANSAS  AND  UTAH      85 

them.  One  of  these  was  Quantrill.  He  wore  a  flaming  red 
woolen  shirt,  from  which  circumstance  he  was  named  "Red 
Shirt"  by  his  companion  herders,  and  he  went  by  that  name 
while  in  the  service  of  Mr.  Chiles.  As  Mr.  Chiles  was  absent 
from  home  to  be  gone  some  weeks  it  was  impossible  to  get 
further  facts  relating  to  the  matter.  Mr.  Forbis  could  not 
recall  the  names  of  the  two  men  hired  with  Quantrill.] 

longings  with  them,  because  they  would  not  return  to  this  train.  Inquiries 
men  aside  and  advised  them  to  seek  employment  elsewhere;  that  they  had 
mistaken  their  calling,  and  were  unfit  for  the  plains,  and  assured  them 
that  not  one  would  ever  find  employment  here.  The  rain  and  scarcity 
of  whiskey  had  sobered  them  some,  and  they  started  for  the  Eialto  Ferry 
and  Weston. 

This  incident  spread  among  the  trains  and  camps  on  the  reservation, 
and  I  told  every  wagonmaster  not  to  hire  bad  men  —  we  did  not  want  to 
be  bothered  with  them;  and  it  was  soon  understood  that  thieves,  thugs  and 
worthless  characters  generally  might  as  well  move  on.  Many  of  these 
found  employment  in  ox  trains  belonging  to  Government  contractors,  and 
were  the  cause  of  strikes,  mutinies  and  loss  to  their  employers.  Of  course, 
there  was  no  civil  law  applicable  to  the  management  of  men  on  the 
plains.  In  a  military  command  the  officer  in  charge  was  all-powerful, 
as  he  must  be  everywhere  within  his  jurisdiction.  Necessity  knows  no  law, 
and  while  all  well  disposed  men  would  perform  their  duties  without  fric- 
tion, the  lawless  element,  sure  to  crop  out  from  time  to  time,  stood  so 
much  in  awe  of  the  military  power  that  they  did  little  harm  to  their 
fellows  or  the  Government.  Where  there  was  no  military  command  the 
same  restraint  did  not  exist,  and  discontented  spirits,  schemers  and  re- 
bellion breeders  often  caused  trouble.  ...  I  recall  many  instances  of 
mutiny  —  teamsters  in  rebellion  against  their  wagonmasters,  in  some  cases 
possibly  with  a  grievance,  and  in  others  through  homesickness  or  the 
spirit  of  rebellion  that  recognizes  no  authority,  always  ready  to  make 
trouble,  delighting  in  the  opportunity  to  become  leaders  for  more  pay,  or 
to  show  their  power  when  their  services  were  most  needed.  .  .  .  By  the 
first  of  June  more  than  six  hundred  six-mule  teams,  one-half  of  the  mules 
never  before  handled,  were  organized  into  trains  of  about  twenty-six  wagons 
each,  and  about  five  hundred  and  fifty  of  them  sent  out  with  columns  of 
troops  en  route  to  Utah.  The  whole  months  of  April  and  May  were  ex- 
ceedingly wet,  no  bridges  in  the  country,  and  to  move  the  first  one  hun- 
dred and  fifty  miles  west  from  Fort  Leavenworth  was  something  terrible. 


CHAPTER  V 

QUANTRILL  AS  A  KANSAS  TEACHER 

QUANTRILL  taught  one  term  of  school  in  Kansas  —  no 
more,  no  less.    Vague  and  indefinite  stories  about  Quan- 
trill  as  a  Kansas  teacher  have  been  abroad  for  more  than 
forty  years.1    Many  of  them  are  ridiculous. 

Some  time  after  Quantrill  returned  to  Stanton  (he  did  not 
live  at  Osawatomie,  but  boarded  at  the  house  of  Bennings)  he 
decided  to  teach  a  school  the  following  winter  —  the  winter  of 
1859-1860.  The  neighbors  had  put  up  a  rude  log  school-house 
in  the  Judge  Roberts  district.  This  school-house  stood  on  the 
northwest  corner  of  the  southwest  quarter  of  Section  33,  Town- 
ship 17,  Range  22,  and  almost  half  a  mile  from  the  Judge  Rob- 
erts dwelling,  which  is  yet  standing  in  a  good  state  of  preserva- 
tion. The  school-house  was  torn  down  long  ago.  It  was  heated 
by  fires  in  an  old  fashioned  fireplace.  The  furniture 
was  primitive  in  the  extreme,  the  seats  being  made  by  splitting 

i  Andreas1 's  History  of  Kansas,  p.  877,  says: 

In  the  winter  of  1857-58,  he  taught  school  in  Judge  Eoberts's  dis- 
trict in  Stanton  township,  and  in  the  following  spring  went  to  Salt  Lake 
City. 

On  the  same  page  Andreas  has  a  letter  written  by  Quantrill  in  his 
school-house,  describing  his  school,  and  dated  at  Stanton,  Kansas  Territory, 
February  8,  1860.  Andreas  was  usually  accurate,  and  it  is  difficult  to 
understand  his  carelessness  in  this  instance. 

In  a  paper  filed  in  the  library  of  the  Kansas  State  Historical  Society, 
Mrs.  Sarah  T.  D.  Eobinson  says: 

He  taught  two  or  three  terms  in  the  Stanton  district  and  gave  sat- 
isfaction to  the  patrons  of  the  school.  In  the  year  1858  he  joined  the 
John  Brown  band  operating  along  the  Kansas  border  living  off  their 
robberies  in  Missouri. 

He  taught  but  one  term,  of  six  months.  In  1858  he  was  in  Utah  and 
not  with  the  John  Brown  band.  Quantrill  took  no  part  in  Kansas  affairs 
until  after  John  Brown  had  left  the  State,  and  very  little  until  after 
John  Brown  was  dead.  But  malice  outruns  truth,  and  in  this  case  it  refutes 
itself  and  becomes  ridiculous. 


QUANTBILL  AS  A  KANSAS  TEACHER     87 

small  logs  and  putting  pegs  in  the  round  side  of  the  slabs,  and 
they  were  so  high  that,  being  without  backs,  it  was  very  tire- 
some and  uncomfortable  to  sit  on  them,  especially  for  the  chil- 
dren whose  feet  did  not  reach  the  floor.  It  was  a  subscription 
school  —  a  private  school.  The  term  was  six  months,  divided 
into  two  sections  of  three  months  each  for  the  purpose  of  com- 
puting the  tuition,  which  was  $2.50  per  scholar  for  three  months. 
It  was  the  agreement  that  Quantrill  was  to  "board  around," 
remaining  with  each  family  or  patron  two  weeks.  But  he  re- 
mained with  some  longer  than  with  others,  being  two  months  at 
the  house  of  Judge  Roberts.3 

2  In  a  letter  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  from  Judge  Thomas 
Roberts  to  H.  V.  Beeson,  dated  at  Paola,  May  16,  1881,  Boberts  says: 

In  answer  to  your  Enquiries  of  my  acquaintance  with  Wm  C.  Quan- 
trell  In  reply  would  state  that  I  became  personally  acquainted  with  him 
in  the  fall  of  1858.  He  taught  the  School  in  my  neighborhood  the  winter 
of  58  &  59  and  boarded  at  my  house  about  two  months  of  that  time,  in 
the  spring  of  59  he  left  that  neighborhood,  afterwards  I  saw  him  in  the 
early  summer  of  1861  he  was  confined  in  the  County  Jail  of  Miami 
county. 

The  judge's  memory  was  at  fault  as  to  the  winter  in  which  the 
school  was  taught.  He  could  not  have  become  acquainted  with  Quantrill 
in  the  fall  of  1858,  for  Quantrill 's  own  letters  show  that  he  was  at  that 
time  in  Utah  or  on  his  way  there,  and  that  he  was  in  Utah  all  of  the 
winter  of  1858-59,  the  time  Judge  Boberts  says  he  was  teaching  school  in 
his  district.  The  judge  puts  the  winter  just  a  year  too  early,  for  Quan- 
trill taught  in  his  district  in  the  winter  of  1859-1860,  as  he  himself  says 
and  as  his  letters  conclusively  prove. 

On  the  19th  day  of  October,  1907,  the  author,  in  company  with  his 
friend  of  long  standing,  Major  J.  B.  Bemington,  of  Osawatomie,  and  Mrs. 
Bemington,  visited  the  people  living  in  the  vicinity  of  where  Quantrill 
taught  the  school.  Many  people  live  there  who  as  children  attended  that 
school,  or  as  parents,  patronized  it.  They  all  said  he  was  a  good  teacher, 
and  that  he  had  no  trouble  whatever  in  his  school.  Among  those  who  at- 
tended were  Thomas  F.  Boberts  and  his  wife,  Boxey  Troxel  Boberts, 
George  Hill  Troxel,  Harrison  Troxel,  George  Shearer,  H.  Shearer,  Delama 
Shearer,  Belle  Boberts,  Eliza  Boberts,  Flora  Boberts,  Mark  Updegraff, 
Augustus  Updegraff,  David  Updegraff,  Drusilla  Updegraff,  Mary  Updegraff, 
Martha  Updegraff,  Elzena  Williams,  Amanda  Williams,  Jefferson  Williams, 
Polk  Williams,  Boger  Williams,  Wesley  Baker,  Hester  Baker,  Adolphus  T. 
Bennings,  and  James  Bennings. 

William  Stockwell  did  not  attend  the  school,  but  he  lived  near  it 
and  had  helped  to  build  the  school-house;  he  attended  ''spelling-school" 
Friday  nights.  Mr.  Stockwell  came  from  Michigan  to  Osawatomie,  and 


88  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

The  first  letter  written  by  Quantrill  after  beginning  his 
school,  which  has  been  preserved,  was  to  his  mother.s  In  it  he 

took  the  claim  on  which  he  now  lives  on  the  13th  of  March,  1857.  He 
said  that  Quantrill  talked  for  the  Tree-State  side  but  took  no  part  in 
affairs  while  teaching;  that  he  was  very  quiet;  told  of  having  been  across 
the  plains;  dressed  neatly,  and  seemed  very  particular  and  careful  as  to 
his  dress;  had  peculiar  eyes  which  were  blue,  though  at  times  they  were 
a  strange  undefinable  color,  and  the  upper  lids  had  a  queer  look;  complexion 
light ;  hair  light  but  not  red  —  not  even  a  sandy  color ;  no  beard ;  no  mus- 
tache; said  Quantrill  always  stayed  at  the  Bennings  home  Saturdays  and 
Sundays. 

Mrs.  Eoxey  Troxel  Eoberts  is  the  daughter  of  the  late  Frederick 
Troxel,  a  Kentuckian  who  moved  to  Illinois,  then  to  Iowa,  then  to  Kansas, 
Arriving  in  Osawatomie  in  1855;  owned  a  part  of  the  land  now  owned  by 
Major  Remington,  on  which  he  lived  when  Quantrill  taught  the  school; 
•Quantrill  boarded  with  him  two  weeks.  She  says  Quantrill  was  a  good 
teacher;  had  large  light-blue  eyes,  a  Eoman  nose,  light  complexion,  light 
hair.  She  spoke  of  his  peculiar  eyes,  saying  they  were  like  no  other  eyes 
she  ever  say  —  upper  lids  heavy.  Says  school  began  in  the  fall,  rather 
late,  and  continued  until  the  next  spring;  school-house  heated  by  fireplace 
in  which  was  kept  a  roaring  fire;  slabs  for  benches;  Quantrill  talked 
for  the  Free-State  side,  but  so  far  as  she  ever  heard  he  took  no  part  in 
affairs;  dressed  neatly;  stayed  at  Bennings 's  Saturdays  and  Sundays;  a 
very  quiet  man,  secretive  and  peculiar ;  "no  one  knew  how  to  take  him. ' ' 

The  author  talked  with  many  others,  and  they  all  told  practically  the 
same  story,  agreeing  with  those  given  above.  It  was  the  opinion  of  all 
that  Quantrill  could  not  have  been  engaged  while  teaching  in  any  of  the 
raids  into  Missouri,  for  he  was  making  his  home  with  Bennings,  a  pro- 
slavery  man  and  friend  to  the  Missourians.  They  could  not  say  as  to 
the  charge  that  he  was  acting  as  a  "detective"  for  the  Missourians  and 
spying  on  the  Kansas  settlers  during  that  period. 

In  the  letter  written  to  W.  W.  Scott  by  H.  V.  Beeson,  dated  Paola, 
Kansas,  June  5,  1880,  Beeson  says: 

He  hung  around  Stanton  some  time  [after  he  had  been  driven  out  of 
the  camp  at  Tuscarora  Lake  by  the  Canal  Dover  young  men  for  stealing] 
and  then  disappeared  for  some  time  and  when  he  came  Back  he  taught 
school  in  the  neighborhood  of  Judge  Roberts  winter  1859,  our  Probate 
Judge,  he  stated  to  his  Friends  that  he  had  been  out  west  to  Utah  under 
Col  or  Gen  Johnston  (who  was  afterwards,  if  I  am  not  mistaken,  killed  at 
Pittsburg  Landing  on  the  Rebel  side)  he  also  stated  to  me  that  he  was 
Employed  in  the  Quartermasters  department,  in  Utah. 

It  will  be  seen  that  Mr.  Beeson  has  the  correct  date  of  Quantrill 's 
school-teaching.  Also,  that  Quantrill  lied  to  him  about  having  been  em- 
ployed in  the  department  of  the  quartermaster;  he  was  not  so  employed. 

3  Letter  of  W.  C.  Quantrill  to  his  mother,  now  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author.  It  is  quite  well  written. 


89 

says  that  he  had  written  a  letter  a  short  time  before,  sufficient 
time  not  having  elapsed  for  an  answer  to  arrive : 

Stanton,  Kansas  Terri. 

Jan.  26th  1860. 
My  Dear  Mother. 

I  again  seat  myself  down  to  pen  you  a  few  lines,  hoping 
that  they  may  cheer  you  in  a  measure,  and  if  so  it  is  all  I  can 
do  at  this  time. 

I  have  not  yet  received  an  answer  to  the  one  I  wrote  you 
before  this,  for  the  reason  that  it  has  not  had  time  to  reach  here ; 
but  I  expect  to  have  one  by  the  time  you  receive  this. 

In  my  last  letter  I  said  we  had  quite  fine  weather  here ;  but 
I  can  now  look  out  of  the  window  at  my  school-house  and  see 
every  thing  clad  in  snow  &  ice,  which  was  put  on  but  last  night, 
and  now  seems  to  hold  every  thing  in  its  cold  embrace;  indeed 
so  sudden  has  been  the  change,  that  it  seems  not  only  to  have 
caught  the  forest  &  prairie  napping  in  the  sunshine  but  the 
people  also,  for  I  feel  it  myself  and  seem  to  shudder  when  I  look 
out  upon  the  snowcovered  ground,  &  hear  the  cold  wind  whistle 
around  &  through  the  forest;  and  it  brings  to  my  recollection 
scenes  which  I  passed  through  in  the  mountains  but  a  short  time 
ago;  it  makes  me  think  of  what  one  of  the  party  said;  (a  Ger- 
man,) when  we  were  lost  at  night  in  the  mountains,  and  he  had 
looked  in  vain  for  the  trail,  he  said,  "well  boys  my  heart  is 
almost  broke  when  I  think  that  we  may  all  die  here  tonight."  We 
laughed  at  him  then,  (for  we  may  as  well  laugh  as  cry  at  that 
time  for  neither  done  any  good,)  but  when  I  have  thought  of  it 
afterwards  &  could  see  what  danger  we  had  been  exposed  to,  I 
feel  thankful  for  having  got  off  as  well  as  I  did.  But  I  have 
slipped  through  it  all  comparatively  easy  and  I  now  begin  to 
realize  my  situation,  and  see  how  much  easier  I  have  been  dealt 
with  than  most  of  my  traveling  companions  were,  and  I  often 
think  that  there  must  have  been  something  else  for  me  to  do, 
that  I  was  spared;  for  my  companions  were  all  strong  healthy 
men  &  endured  no  more  hardship  than  myself,  still  the  greater 
part  of  them  have  seen  their  friends  for  the  last  time  on  this 
earth;  all  of  this  has  had  a  tendency  to  rouse  me  &  let  me  see 
what  I  have  been  doing. 

It  is  now  noon  and  I  again  write,  for  I  had  to  stop  when  it 
was  time  for  school  to  begin.  The  weather  has  changed  some 
little  since,  and  ever  and  anon  the  sun  bursts  through  the  clouds, 
melting  the  snow  on  the  roof,  and  causes  the  ice  clad  forest  to 
sparkle  &  shine  like  silver,  and  the  storm  is  gradually  passing 
away,  and  it  seems  it  has  been  only  a  frown  which  has  passed 


90  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BOEDER  WARS 

over  the  heavens,  which  are  now  being  lit  up  with  glad  smiles, 
and  soon  all  will  be  pleasant  again.  And  when  I  look  out  upon 
the  snow  it  reminds  me  again  of  my  mountain  trip ;  and  the  ex- 
cruciating pain  we  suffered  from  snowblindness,  caused  by  look- 
ing all  day  on  the  bright  snow;  none  of  us  were  exempt  from 
this,  the  sensation  is  that  of  having  your  eyes  badly  smoked, 
which  lasted  for  several  days,  the  eyes  become  inflamed  &  swol- 
len causing  very  much  pain. 

There  is  no  news  now  I  believe  at  present,  all  is  peace  and 
quietness  in  the  country,  and  all  seems  to  move  on  smoothly, 
but  times  are  hard,  and  the  people  complain  of  the  taxes  which 
they  have  to  pay,  and  indeed  they  are  enormous  for  such  a  new 
country,  and  under  the  present  form  of  government  are  not  apt 
to  cease. 

You  have  undoubtedly  heard  of  the  wrongs  committed  in 
this  territory  by  the  southern  people,  or  proslavery  party,  but 
when  one  once  knows  the  facts  they  can  easily  see  that  it  has 
been  the  opposite  party  that  have  been  the  main  movers  in  the 
troubles  &  by  far  the  most  lawless  set  of  people  in  the  country. 
They  all  sympathize  for  old  J.  Brown,  who  should  have  been 
hung  years  ago,  indeed  hanging  was  too  good  for  him.  May  I 
never  see  a  more  contemptible  people  than  those  who  sympathize 
for  him.  A  murderer  and  a  robber,  made  a  martyr  of;  just 
think  of  it. 

When  you  write  let  me  know  all  that  you  have  time  to  write 
about,  for  I  feel  anxious  to  know  something  about  home  and  the 
village  of  my  boyhood  more  than  I  have  been  heretofore  and  I 
cannot  really  say  why  it  is  so,  but  I  think  of  it  more,  and  have 
lately  visited  it  in  my  dreams,  which  was  quite  rare  before;  it 
may  be  because  my  mind  has  become  more  settled,  and  my  mind 
must  be  employed  in  some  way,  and  I  suppose  that  is  the  most 
natural.  I  wish  to  know  all  that  has  happened  of  note  lately, 
and  I  would  like  well  to  be  there  and  I  think  I  will  be,  (if  I 
live)  in  the  course  of  the  summer.  At  least  I  have  made  up  my 
mind  to  that  point  I  suppose  all  the  people  about  there  think  I 
am  never  coming  back  again,  and  that  also  that  I  have  done 
wrong  in  going  away  at  all;  this  I  will  acknowledge,  but  who 
could  have  made  me  believe  it  at  that  time,  I  think  no  one,  for 
my  brain  ran  so  with  wild  thoughts  that  I  was  blind  to  every 
thing  else.  I  think  that  I  am  not  the  only  one,  of  that  failing ; 
only  it  has,  probably  been  carried  to  a  greater  extent  in  my  case 
than  others,  and  my  situation  has  been  different  from  theirs. 

Though  I  have  been  quite  foolish  in  my  notions  of  the  last 
three  or  four  years,  still  I  have  been  taught  many  a  good  lesson 
by  them,  and  think  I  shall  not  regret  it  in  after  life  so  much 
as  I  do  now,  for  it  is  now  that  I  feel  it  the  keenest,  and  can  see 


QUANTRILL  AS  A  KANSAS  TEACHER  91 

the  whole  picture  of  my  doings  in  one  broad  sheet,  which  may 
be  rolled  up  and  laid  by  to  look  upon  in  after  life.  I  have  seen 
a  little  of  the  world  I  know  how  others  manage  to  keep  moving 
in  the  vast  crowd  which  is  moving  ahead ;  I  have  seen  the  means 
used  by  different  communities  to  keep  body  and  soul  together, 
I  have  compared  them  with  each  other  and  find  in  the  end  they 
all  amount  to  the  same,  with  only  this  difference,  that  their  situ- 
ations are  different,  and  the  ends  accomplished  are  adapted  to 
their  situations,  this  (is  all)  a  good  comfortable  living,  which 
any  person  of  good  health  &  mind  can  procure  in  any  country 
for  theirself  and  two  or  three  others  &  still  have  plenty  of  time 
for  amusement ;  and  this  is  all  we  can  have  in  this  world. 

Well  I  must  bid  you  good  by;  for  my  sheet  is  about  full, 
and  when  I  receive  an  answer  to  my  first  one  I  will  write  again, 
Hoping  that  this  may  find  you  and  all  in  fine  health  as  the 

writer  is.    My  love  to  you  all 

Your  Son 
W.  C.  Quantrill, 

Kansas. 

Here  is  the  first  evidence  that  Quantrill  was  changing  polit- 
ical faith.  In  his  letter  written  two  years  before  from  Tuscarora 
Lake  he  said  every  Missourian  should  have  been  shot  and  that 
all  Democrats  were  rascals.  His  association  with  the  rough 
characters  following  in  the  wake  of  the  army  across  the  Plains, 
most  of  them  from  Missouri,  had  wrought  the  change.  The  in- 
fluence he  was  under  at  the  home  of  Bennings  was  bearing  fruit. 
Those  now  living,  who  knew  him  while  teaching,  say  he  talked 
in  favor  of  the  Free-State  people.  But  he  was  at  that  very 
time,  as  this  letter  conclusively  proves,  secretly  against  them 
and  had  gone  over  to  their  enemies.  He  was,  among  them,  a 
wolf  in  sheep's  clothing,  a  hypocrite,  a  spy,  a  traitor.  This  let- 
ter is  the  explanation  of  the  actions  of  all  his  subsequent  life. 
He  lived  nearly  a  year  longer  in  Kansas,  but  he  had  made  up  his 
mind  to  cast  his  lot  with  the  enemies  of  Kansas.  There  may 
have  been  times  in  his  life  of  crime  the  remainder  of 
his  days  in  Kansas  when  he  had  thoughts  of  remaining,  but  they 
were  fleeting  if  he  had  them.  He  had  deliberately  made  up  his 
mind  to  go  over  to  the  Missourians,  and  the  time  he  remained  in 
Kansas  was  spent  in  seeking  an  opportunity  to  do  Kansas  as 
much  injury  as  possible  in  making  the  change.  For  a  year  he 


92  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

lived  a  border-ruffian  in  Kansas,  false  to  every  associate,  to  every 
principle  he  professed.  And  it  is  well  to  remember  that  he  had 
no  cause  from  any  settler  of  Kansas  to  make  this  change.  The 
settlers  had  been  lenient  with  him  and  borne  with  him  in  his 
crimes,  not  even  arresting  him  for  any  of  them.  Only  a  man 
who  has  reached  the  depths  of  moral  degradation  is  capable  of 
such  action  —  capable  of  such  a  life. 

And  the  friends  of  John  Brown  should  be  glad  that  this 
letter  has  been  preserved.  No  man  has  been  so  persistently 
slandered  and  traduced  as  has  John  Brown  in  recent  years  by 
those  jealous  of  the  place  he  made  for  himself  in  history,  es- 
pecially in  Kansas  history.  Petty  and  insignificant  souls,  dol- 
lar-bent, saw  a  great  commonwealth  rise  here  upon  the  broadest 
possible  foundation  of  liberty,  to  which  they  contributed  little. 
It  grew  in  spite  of  the  frenzied  finance  they  practiced  in  the 
administration  of  its  revenues.  Some  of  the  loot  so  obtained  has 
been  used  to  hire  unprincipled  characters  to  write  coarse  and 
vulgar  slanders  of  John  Brown.  Other  sources  having  been 
exhausted  without  effect,  they  have  recently  asserted  that 
Quantrill  and  John  Brown  operated  together  in  Kansas.  True, 
there  was  never  a  syllable  of  authority  for  such  assertion,  but 
slander  is  never  based  on  any  authority. 

This  is  a  good  place  to  state  the  facts  in  this  matter.  Quan- 
trill came  to  Kansas  in  the  spring  of  1857.  Then  the  most  im- 
portant events  of  the  Territorial  troubles  were  passed.  The 
Wakarusa  War,  the  sacking  of  Lawrence,  the  battle  of  Black 
Jack,  the  battle  of  Osawatomie,  the  killing  of  Dutch  Bill  and 
his  dupes  on  the  Pottawatomie  —  all  these  had  occurred  before 
Quantrill  came  to  Kansas.  From  the  time  of  his  coming  in  1857 
to  the  time  he  was  driven  from  the  camp  at  Tuscarora  Lake 
certainly  the  most  bitter  -enemy  of  John  Brown  would  not  say 
that  they  had  acted  together.  In  the  spring  of  1858  Quantrill 
went  to  Utah  and  did  not  return  until  the  last  of  July,  1859. 
John  Brown  had  been  gone  from  Kansas  six  months  when 
Quantrill  came  back  to  Kansas.  Brown  was  in  Virginia,  and  he 
never  returned  to  Kansas.  And  his  men  were  with  him.  The 
only  time  John  Brown  and  Quantrill  were  in  Kansas  at  the 
same  time  was  in  November,  1857,  and  then  for  less  than  a  month. 


QUANTRILL  AS  A  KANSAS  TEACHER  93 

Brown  was  at  Lawrence  and  Topeka.  He  had  come  to  take  his 
men  out  to  have  them  drilled  for  the  Virginia  campaign.  It  is 
safe  to  say  that  Quantrill  never  saw  John  Brown  —  never  saw 
any  of  John  Brown's  men,  and  that  neither  Brown  nor  a  single 
one  of  his  men  ever  saw  Quantrill.  Because  of  the  action  of 
Forbes,  John  Brown  had  to  postpone  his  Virginia  campaign  a 
year,  and  he  returned  to  Kansas,  arriving  at  Lawrence  on  the 
25th  of  June,  1858.  -Reference  to  P.  G.  Lowe's  excellent  work, 
Five  Tears  a  Dragoon,  will  show  that  all  the  trains  had  left 
Fort  Leavenworth  for  Utah  long  before  the  arrival  of  John 
Brown  in  Kansas  in  1858,  and  as  Quantrill  went  out  with  one 
of  these  trains,  it  is  impossible  that  he  saw  Brown  at  that  time. 
The  few  days  that  John  Brown  and  Quantrill  were  even  in  Kan- 
sas Territory  at  the  same  time  was  in  November,  1857,  and 
Quantrill  was  then  a  petty  thief  stealing  provisions  from  his 
comrades  at  Tuscarora  Lake. 

Quan trill's  best  letters  were  written  while  teaching  this 
term  of  school  in  Kansas.  On  the  8th  of  February  he  wrote  a 
long  letter  to  his  mother.*  He  was  in  a  pensive  mood  at  the 
time.  Perhaps  if  he  could  have  reformed  without  effort  —  by 
some  miracle  in  the  execution  of  which  he  had  no  part,  he  would 
have  welcomed  the  change.  Man  is  cursed  with  such  repentance 
as  that.  He  sees  the  gleaming  mountain-tops  of  a  better  land 
and  longs  to  enter  an  ideal  life  there,  but  the  call  back  to  life 
as  it  is  and  has  been  breaks  the  spell.  Strength  to  rouse  from 
the  lethargy  of  the  old  life  and  turn  about  and  flee  from  it  as 
from  very  death  to  the  hills  from  whence  cometh  help  is  want- 
ing. The  better  self  is  called  back  and  stifled.  The  old  burden 
is  taken  up  to  be  borne  by  stumbling  feet  over  sinks  and  quag- 
mires while  anxious  eyes  behold  the  star  of  hope  fall  below  the 
rugged  line  of  the  dark  mountain  to  be  replaced  by  ignis-fatui 
kindled  of  vanities  and  temptations  by  the  devil: 


4  The  original  of  this  letter  is  lost.  It  is  published  in  Andreas 's 
History  of  Kansas,  as  a  part  of  the  history  of  Miami  county.  There  is 
a  copy  of  the  letter  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  also  the  correspondence 
between  Andreas  and  W.  W.  Scott  leading  up  to  its  publication.  As  pub- 
lished, it  would  seem  that  there  were  omissions  made  by  the  printer,  but 
the  copy  made  by  Scott  corresponds  with  the  letter  as  published. 


94     QUANTEILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Stanton,  Kansas  Territory, 

Feb.  8,  1860 
My  Dear  Mother. 

It  is  a  pleasant  morning,  this ;  the  sun  is  just  rising,  its  light 
causing  the  trees,  bushes  and  grass  to  glitter  like  brilliants, 
while  the  hanging  sheets  of  frost  drop  from  them,  announcing 
his  warmth,  then  silently  melting  away.  I  stood  in  my  school- 
house  door,  and  viewing  this  it  made  me  feel  a  new  life,  and 
merry  as  the  birds.  But  these  feelings  and  thoughts  are  soon 
changed  and  forgotten,  by  the  arrival  of  eight  or  ten  of  my 
scholars,  who  come  laughing  and  tripping  along  as  though  their 
lives  would  always  be  like  this  beautiful  morning,  calm  and 
serene.  And  I  wish  that  I  could  always  be  as  these  children. 
But  I  have  been  so  no  doubt,  and  I  have  no  reason  to  expect  it 
a  second  time.  Every  year  brings  its  changes  and  no  two  are 
alike. 

School  is  now  closed  for  the  day,  and  I  am  again  left  alone 
with  my  thoughts.  I  am  thinking  of  home  and  all  the  happy 
days  I  spent  there ;  and  then  of  the  unhappy  days  I  have  spent 
since  and  those  you  have  spent.  In  a  few  days  it  will  be  three 
years,  though  it  only  seems  like  a  few  months.  The  sun  is  shed- 
ding its  last  rays,  and  the  chill  air  of  evening  still  declares  that 
summer  has  not  yet  arrived.  Every  now  and  then  a  blast  from 
the  north  holds  all  nature  in  check,  in  spite  of  the  warming  in- 
fluences of  the  sun  to  revive  it. 

How  different  now  to  me  it  is  from  one  year  ago,  when  I 
was  amidst  the  snow  covered  mountains  of  Utah.  It  seemed  that 
a  summer  of  sunshine  would  not  be  sufficient  to  break  the  icy 
fetters  of  winter.  We  should  have  died  of  ennui  in  the  Mormon 
society  if  it  had  not  been  for  the  excitement  attendant  upon  a 
camp  of  soldiers. 

You  perceive,  I  suppose,  that  I  am  writing  at  different 
times  between  my  school  hours,  which  causes  my  letter  to  be 
somewhat  broken. 

It  is  now  noon,  and  the  sun  shines  warm,  with  a  pleasant 
south  wind ;  and  my  scholars  are  enjoying  themselves  as  scholars 
did  when  I  was  one.  And  they,  like  all  children,  are  enjoying 
more  happiness  now  than  they  will  at  any  other  period  of  their 
lives.  I  sometimes  wish  that  I  was  again  a  scholar  in  the  old 
brick  schoolhouse  at  Dover;  and  again  with  my  companions  on 
the  playground.  But  scholars  and  companions  are  all  far  from 
me  now,  and  I  am  left  alone  to  contemplate.  It  all  seems  to  me 
but  a  dream,  a  very  little  of  which  I  ever  realized ;  or,  more  like 
a  sheet  of  paper  on  the  first  page  of  which  there  are  a  few  signs, 
showing  that  something  has  been  commenced,  and  then  all  the 
rest  left  blank,  telling  you  not  what  was  the  purpose  of  the 


QUANTRILL  AS  A  KANSAS  TEACHER     95 

writer,  and  leaving  you  to  surmise;  though  if  it  had  been  con- 
tinued it  might  have  been  of  benefit  to  some  one.  Thus  my  mind 
is  ever  recalling  the  past,  and  my  conscience  tells  me  that  if 
something  noble  is  not  done  in  the  future  to  fill  up  this  blank, 
then  it  had  better  be  destroyed,  so  that  none  may  take  it  for  an 
example. 

But  as  this  is  leap  year,  I  think  it  advisable  for  those  who 
intend  to  turn  over  a  new  leaf,  to  take  their  leap  with  the  year, 
and  then  keep  moving  with  it,  and  then  probably  they  may  have 
something  more  than  a  blank.  I  think  I  can  insure  it  if  there 
is  a  firm  resolution. 

I  can  now  see  more  clearly  than  ever  in  my  life  before,  that 
I  have  been  striving  and  working  really  without  any  end  in 
view.  And  now  since  I  am  satisfied  that  such  a  course  must  end 
in  nothing,  it  must  be  changed,  and  that  soon,  or  it  will  be  too 
late.  All  the  benefit  that  I  can  see  I  have  derived  from  my  past 
course,  is  that  I  have  improved  my  health  materially,  which  was 
none  of  the  best  when  I  came  here.  I  have  also  learned  to  do 
almost  any  kind  of  outdoor  work,  which  experience  will  serve 
in  future  to  preserve  my  health,  and  also  enable  me  to  get  along 
much  better  than  if  I  was  only  fitted  for  the  schoolroom  or  other 
indoor  business. 

When  my  school  is  finished,  I  will  be  able  to  tell  you  better 
what  my  plans  are  for  the  coming  year.  One  thing  is  certain: 
I  am  done  roving  around  seeking  a  fortune,  for  I  have  found 
where  it  may  be  obtained  by  being  steady  and  industrious.  And 
now  that  I  have  sown  wild  oats  so  long,  I  think  it  is  time  to  be- 
gin harvesting;  which  will  only  be  accomplished  by  putting  in 
a  different  crop  in  different  soil. 

There  is  no  news  here  but  hard  times,  and  harder  still  com- 
ing, for  I  see  their  shadows;  and  "coming  events  cast  their 
shadows  before,"  is  an  old  proverb.  But  I  do  not  fear  that  my 
destiny  is  fixed  in  this  country,  nor  do  I  wish  to  be  compelled 
to  stay  in  it  any  longer  than  possible,  for  the  devil  has  got  un- 
limited sway  over  this  territory,  and  will  hold  it  until  we  have 
a  better  set  of  men  and  society  generally.  The  only  cry  is, 
"What  is  best  for  ourselves  and  our  dear  friends." 

I  suppose  Dover  has  changed  a  great  deal  since  I  was  there, 
but  not  more  than  I  have,  and  probably  not  as  much ;  for  I  think 
there  are  few  there  who  would  know  me  if  I  were  to  come  un- 
expectedly. I  suppose  the  boys  have  grown  to  be  almost  men, 
and  likely  I  should  hardly  recognize  them  if  I  were  to  see  them 
any  place  but  at  home.  Well,  surely  I  have  changed  around 
a  great  deal  in  the  last  three  years,  and  have  seen  a  great  many 
people  and  countries,  and  enough  incidents  to  make  a  novel  of 
adventures. 


96     QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

When  I  get  a  letter  from  you,  and  some  of  the  others,  I  will 
write  again,  but  now  I  must  close,  by  hoping  that  this  bit  of 
scribbling  may  find  you  in  as  good  health  as  the  one  who  is 
writing.  My  love  to  you  all,  and  respects  to  those  who  inquire 
of  me.  Your  Son, 

W.  C.  Quantrill. 
To  Mrs.  Caroline  Quantrill, 

Dover,  Tuscarawas  County  Ohio. 

These  sentiments  appear  all  through  the  letters  written  by 
Quantrill  while  teaching  in  Kansas.  The  journey  across  the 
Plains  comes  up  before  him.  There  is  no  doubt  but  that  he 
stood  in  the  very  presence  of  death  in  those  stormy  days.  Per- 
haps memories  came  to  him  which  he  bid  depart  —  memories  in 
the  presence  of  which  he  stood  aghast,  memories  which  would 
fade  away  only  when  overwhelmed  and  crushed  by  some  act 
far  exceeding  in  ferocity  and  wickedness  that  from  which  they 
sprang.  What  a  flood  engulfs  him  with  bloody  hands  and  a 
mind  demoralized!  A  man  may  ride  such  a  tide  as  it  roars 
through  gorges  over  sunken  rocks,  but  he  is  flung  at  last  into  that 
black  lake  where  he  shall  cry  out  for  death  and  it  will  mock  him 
and  flee  far  away. 

The  next  letter  of  Quantrill  was  written  to  his  sister  Mary. 
She  was  visiting  her  grandfather  Quantrill  in  Washington  City.s 
By  all  accounts  she  was  a  sweet  good  girl  upon  whose  life  there 
dawned  no  hope  of  higher  things  in  this  world  than  she  found 
within  the  walls  of  the  poor  cottage  of  her  mother.  She  did  the 
lowly  duties  of  the  life  of  a  sewing-girl  to  get  bread  for  those 
she  loved.  She  wasted  with  consumption,  but  no  complaint  rose 
to  her  lips.  She  sang  "The  Song  of  the  Shirt"  nightly,  but  no 
bitterness  entered  her  heart.  How  unworthy  are  the  best  of 
men  of  the  love  of  a  good  woman!  How  shall  we  express  the 
base  ingratitude,  the  utter  unworthiness  of  Quantrill  of  the 
lovely  life  of  his  sister  Mary,  whose  name  he  blackened  by  his 
inhuman  crimes! 

Stanton,  Kansas  T.  Mar  23,  1860. 
My  dear  Sister. 

I  received  your  kind  letter  on  the  17th,  with  much  pleasure 

5  The  original  of  this  letter  is  lost.  "W.  W.  Scott  made  a  copy  of  it 
and  this  copy  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 


QUANTRILL  AS  A  KANSAS  TEACHER  97 

&  not  a  little  surprise.  I  am  glad  to  hear  that  you  are  well  and 
in  such  good  spirits,  for  then  I  know  you  are  happy.  You  say 
you  like  to  live  in  the  city  [Washington,  where  she  was  on  a 
visit],  and  that  you  have  enjoyed  yourself  very  much  since  you 
have  been  there.  Then  you  have  surpassed  me,  for  I  have  not 
enjoyed  myself  much  or  felt  very  happy  since  I  left  home;  for 
happiness  depends  on  contentment,  and  that  has  not  fell  to  my 
lot,  and  it  seems  to  me  never  will. 

I  would  like  very  much  to  see  you  and  the  rest  of  the  fam- 
ily, and  I  will  (if  I  keep  my  health  and  have  no  bad  luck)  some- 
time this  summer.  The  weather  is  very  fine  here,  and  has  been 
for  the  last  month,  causing  the  flowers  to  spring  up  and  the 
grass  to  carpet  the  prairie  in  green;  also  causing  the  forest  to 
be  set  with  green  sheets,  soon  to  form  a  screen  for  the  merry 
songsters  and  shelter  them  from  the  noonday  sun  of  midsummer. 
The  pleasant  whistle  of  the  Bob  "White  and  red  bird,  have 
caused  the  plowboy  to  join  in  with  them  while  he  turns  over  the 
warm  soil,  for  the  reception  of  the  golden  seed.  What  a  con- 
trast! One  year  ago  I  was  amid  snow  and  desolation  in  the 
Rocky  Mountains,  where  nothing  was  to  be  seen  but  snow  &  sky ; 
no  signs  of  life  except  in  our  little  company.  Some  of  us  strove 
to  be  merry,  &  occasionally  would  start  some  song,  which  would 
be  broken  off  by  some  one  calling  for  help  to  get  some  poor  ani- 
mal out  of  the  snow.  Or  by  the  time  one  verse  would  be  sung 
then  his  merriment  would  be  ended.  But  when  night  came  and 
we  were  about  to  lie  down  to  rest,  and  nothing  but  the  snow  to 
make  a  bed  upon,  it  was  enough  to  make  any  one  have  cool 
thoughts. 

You  people  of  the  crowded  city  can  form  no  idea  of  what 
men  go  through  &  how  they  have  to  struggle  to  keep  from  the 
grasp  of  grim  death,  which  apparently  stares  them  in  the  face 
as  they  move  along. 

I  will  give  you  a  little  sketch  of  myself  as  I  appeared  in 
camp,  and  the  way  we  passed  our  time.  My  dress  consisted  of 
a  complete  suit  of  buckskin ;  pants,  coat,  moccasins,  a  red  wool- 
len shirt,  a  fur  cap,  a  large  leather  belt  in  which  is  a  large 
pistol  and  knife ;  and  then  mounted  on  an  Indian  pony,  with  my 
rifle  laying  across  the  saddle,  ready  for  use  in  a  moment's  warn- 
ing. We  look  rough  enough,  for  we  do  not  shave  or  cut  our  hair, 
and  to  a  person  not  used  to  such  sights,  we  look  like  ruffians. 
When  we  camped,  &  the  horses  and  mules  were  turned  out  to 
graze,  and  one  or  two  of  the  company  to  watch  them  while  the 
rest  attended  to  camp,  make  a  fire,  bring  water  and  cook  our 
camp  meal,  which  is  composed  of  biscuit  or  cakes,  coffee,  and  ven- 


98  QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

ison  or  buffalo  steak;  and  sometimes  by  way  of  a  treat,  some 
bacon,  and  beans,  usually  on  Sunday ;  and  occasionally  a  grouse 
or  rabbit  or  duck,  &  then  to  finish  with,  a  relish  for  this  never 
felt  by  those  of  the  city  or  town.  After  supper  the  animals 
were  brought  to  camp  and  picketed  close  by;  we  spread  our 
blankets  on  the  ground  and  with  the  heavens  for  a  canopy  & 
the  howling  of  the  wolves  we  are  lulled  to  sleep  with  more  sat- 
isfaction than  I  ever  felt  any  place  else.  Some  watch  while  the 
others  sleep,  &  by  sunrise  the  next  morning  we  are  again  on  the 
road. 

You  think  this  is  quite  an  unpleasant  way  to  spend  time, 
but  we  can  see  some  pleasure,  but  persons  not  acquainted  with 
euch  times  cannot  realize  that  there  can  be  any  satisfaction  at  all. 
There  are  hundreds  of  persons  going  to  the  gold  regions  this 
spring  again ;  but  I  shall  not  go  for  I  want  to  come  home  and  see 
the  folks  once  more  any  how.  I  suppose  you  will  be  at  home 
when  I  get  there,  and  then  we  will  all  be  together  again,  if  we 
live.  Tell  Thomas  Leckron  that  I  would  like  to  see  him,  and 
maybe  he  would  like  to  come  and  see  some  of  the  West  after 
seeing  so  much  of  the  East.  If  I  knew  his  directions  I  would 
write  to  him  and  also  to  Grandfather. 

You  will  perceive  this  letter  has  not  all  been  written  on  the 
same  day,  for  I  write  before  and  after  school  occasionally,  and 
therefore  it  will  appear  somewhat  broken.  You  say  you  are 
glad  that  I  am  not  married ;  but  I  might  take  a  notion  to  bring 
some  pretty  Kansas  girl  along  home  when  I  come,  and  let  you 
see  that  there  are  a  few  pretty  ones  here  as  well  as  there.  I 
have  a  couple  of  interesting  ladies  coming  to  school  now.  I  have 
seen  a  great  many  pretty  girls  since  I  have  been  away  from 
home,  and  have  had  considerable  sport  sometimes;  but  as  to 
marrying  any  of  them,  I  have  not  had  any  serious  thoughts  yet. 

I  suppose  a  good  many  girls  of  Dover  have  been  married 
since  I  left,  and  all  of  the  small  ones  have  grown  up  to  be  young 
ladies.  I  expect  Dover  and  the  people  have  changed  a  great 
deal  since  I  was  there,  but  not  more  than  I  have. 

I  wonder  if  the  weather  is  as  fine  with  you  as  it  is  here,  for 
it  is  most  delightful  here.  The  prairie  looks  as  green  and  fresh, 
and  then  so  many  flowers  peeping  up  as  though  half  afraid  Jack 
Frost  was  somewhere  near.  And  then  the  songs  of  so  many 
merry  little  birds  make  one  wish  he  were  as  happy  as  all  around 
him ;  but  that  cannot  be ;  as  this  earth  is  not  a  heaven  for  man ; 
for  we  at  the  happiest  day  feel  a  burden  of  sorrow  which  we 
cannot  throw  off  here.  I  will  put  a  couple  of  flowers  in  this 
letter  that  you  may  see  some  of  the  beauties  of  Kansas.  And  now 


QUANTRILL  AS  A  KANSAS  TEACHER     99 

I  must  close  my  letter,  hoping  that  it  may  find  you  and  all  in  as 
good  health  as  myself.  Give  my  love  to  all,  and  a  kiss  for  your- 
self 

Your  Brother. 

W.  C.  Quantrill 
Direct  your  answer 
to  Lawrence 

K  T. 

When  Quantrill  wrote  the  next  letter  to  his  mother  he  stood 
on  the  threshold  of  a  new  era  in  his  life.  This  period  was  to  be 
brief  —  to  continue  less  than  a  year.  He  declared  that  he  had 
determined  to  rove  no  more,  but  it  is  not  certain  that  he  did  not 
return  immediately  to  the  Pike's  Peak  gold  region,  nor  is  it 
known  positively  that  he  did  so.6 

6  There  is  some  evidence  that  Quantrill  crossed  the  Plains  twice.  If 
so,  he  set  out  on  his  second  trip  immediately  after  his  school  closed.  For 
he  certainly  did  not  return  to  Kansas  before  going  into  the  gold  region 
after  his  trip  to  Utah,  but  went  with  a  party  from  Utah  to  the  Pike's  Peak 
region,  and  from  there  he  returned  to  Kansas  in  the  summer  of  1859. 

The  following  postal  card,  written  by  James  Hanway  to  W.  W.  Scott, 
would  seem  to  be  conclusive  evidence  that  Quantrill  crossed  the  Plains 
twice : 

Lane,  Franklin  Co.  Kansas  —  April  13,  1879 
Dear  Sir  — 

Yesterday  I  came  across  a  man  of  the  name  of  Adolphus  Y.  Bennings, 
Lane  P  office,  who  crossed  the  Plains  twice  with  Quantrill  —  &  he  tells  me 
that  Q  —  boarded  at  his  fathers  house,  near  Stanton,  Miami  Co  —  after 
Q  — had  left  Beesons  &  Torrey  —  and  he  was  with  Quantrill  after  the 
Walker  affair  and  was  arrested  &  placed  in  the  Paola  Jail  —  He  evidently 
could  give  you  some  incidents  about  Q  —  life  in  Kansas.  But  there  may 
be  some  difficulty  in  opening  up  a  correspondence  with  him  —  He  is  a  poor 
scribe,  &  has  evidently  been  a  pro-slavery  man,  at  the  time  of  the  troubles. 
He  says  he  will  propound  any  questions  you  may  ask  —  better  send  him  a 
letter  —  He  has  moved  from  Stanton  &  now  lives  a  few  miles  from  Lane  — 

James  Hanway. 

This  card  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  It  is  addressed  to 
"Mr.  W.  W.  Scott 

"Canal  Dover 

"Ohio" 

The  postmark  is  as  follows:  "Lane,  Franklin  County,  Kansas.  D. 
L.  Welsh,  P.  M." 

There  is  a  letter  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  from  Colonel  Sam 
Walker,  of  Lawrence,  saying  that  if  Quantrill  went  out  with  the  Parsons 
party,  which  left  Lawrence  May  21,  1858,  he  had  not  known  it  until  he 
received  Scott's  letter.  An  account  of  the  trip  made  by  that  party  is 
given  by  William  B.  Parsons,  a  member  of  it,  in  The  Kansas  Magazine, 


100          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

During  the  time  he  was  teaching,  if  there  is  any  reliance  to 
be  placed  in  what  he  wrote  to  his  mother,  he  had  seen  a  kindly 
hand  beckon  him  to  a  new  life  and  felt  inclined  to  follow  in  the 
hope  that  he  might  find  there  a  remedy  for  his  unhappiness. 
But,  in  the  light  of  his  later  course  and  actions,  what  he  wrote 
to  his  mother  must  be  taken  with  great  allowance;  for,  in  Kan- 
sas he  lived  one  life  and  wrote  his  mother  of  one  he  did  not  live. 
By  his  letters  she  was  to  see  that  he  was  a  poor,  meek  boy  strug- 
gling to  get  board  and  clothing.  That  was  to  avoid  sending  her 
any  assistance,  if  his  after  life  is  to  be  considered.  He  was  in 
fact  a  thief  from  the  first  in  Kansas,  and  long  before  he  wrote 
these  poetic  letters  to  his  mother  and  sister  he  was  a  wild  and 
reckless  gambler.  The  letters  bear  an  air  of  insincerity  and  dis- 
simulation. He  wrote  " against  time,"  filling  his  letters  with 
sentiments  about  spring  and  flowers  —  abstract  flights  of  fancy 
and  stories  of  discontent  and  unhappiness,  never  asking  how  his 
mother  was  managing  to  live  and  support  his  brothers  and  sis- 
ters, never  sending  her  aid,  but  always  talking  of  the  ideal 
climate,  the  green  prairies  and  forests,  the  merry  songsters,  the 
whistling  of  the  Bob  "White  (in  March),  and  harping  about  his 
disquieting  state  of  mind.  In  his  letters  he  was  Dr.  Jekyl;  in 
Kansas  he  was  Mr.  Hyde. 

Quantrill  had  sown  the  wind.  If  any  better  things  had  ap- 
pealed to  him  he  turned  away  and  set  his  face  hard  against 
them.  His  decision  was  finally  reached,  his  mind  made  up.  The 
die  was  cast,  and  he  told  his  mother  to  direct  her  letters  to 
Lawrence.  He  would  continue  to  sow  the  wind. 

Stanton.  Kansas. 

Mar.  25th.  1860 
My  Dear  Mother. 

I  again  seat  myself  to  write  you  a  few  words  to  let  you 
know  that  I  am  still  among  the  living  and  healthy  for  this  coun- 


Vol.  I,  p.  552,  et  seq.  If  Quantrill  went  out  with  that  party  he  did  not 
return  with  it,  but  fell  in  with  the  trains  going  to  Utah  and  went  on  to 
that  country.  It  is  very  improbable  that  he  went  with  that  party.  It 
is  almost  a  certainty  that  he  went  to  Fort  Leavenworth  and  started  from 
that  point  to  Utah. 

Scott  must  have  believed  that  the  Lawrence  party  left  for  Pike's 
Peak  in  the  spring  of  1860  —  two  years  later  than  it  actually  did  leave. 


QUANTRILL  AS  A  KANSAS  TEACHER     101 

try;  and  if  these  few  words  find  you  in  the  same  situation  will 
be  all  I  can  wish  for  at  present.  I  have  not  received  an  answer 
to  my  last  letter  yet;  although  I  received  one  from  Mary  two 
weeks  ago;  and  answered  it  last  week.  She  said  she  was  enjoy- 
ing good  health,  and  passing  her  time  quite  pleasantly. 

The  weather  is  quite  pleasant  here,  and  has  been  for  a 
month  back.  The  prairie  has  a  carpet  of  green,  variegated  with 
innumerable  flowers,  peeping  half  afraid  through  the  green 
blades  as  though  they  were  afraid  of  Jack  Frost,  but  they  show 
a  change  from  the  cold  frown  of  winter  to  the  glad  smiles  of 
spring.  The  forests  too  show  a  change,  for  every  branch  is  set 
with  shoots  of  tender  green,  soon  to  screen  the  earth's  naked 
breast  and  afford  a  shelter  from  the  noonday  sun  for  the  merry 
songsters  now  congregating  there;  and  hailing  the  golden  sun 
with  their  joyous  notes,  as  he  shows  himself  on  the  distant 
prairie,  and  continuing  their  songs  the  livelong  day,  delighting 
the  ears  of  the  woodsman  &  inspiring  new  life  in  the  emigrant; 
for  the  nights  are  cool  and  put  somewhat  of  a  damper  on  their 
spirits ;  for  you  must  know  these  people  have  to  be  exposed,  and 
therefore  cannot  realize  the  return  of  spring,  as  we  who  are  situ- 
ated comfortably.  And  then  the  crowing  of  the  grouse,  the 
whistle  of  the  Bob  White,  enliven  the  farmer  &  he  joins  with 
them  as  he  turns  over  the  rich  loose  soil,  from  which  he  is  to 
reap  his  harvest  for  the  support  of  his  family.  Every  thing, 
and  every  body  around  me  seems  to  be  happy ;  but  I  am  not  be- 
cause I  am  not  contented  &  there  lies  the  chief  source  of  happi- 
ness on  this  earth.  As  I  sit  in  my  schoolroom  and  contemplate 
these  scenes,  in  their  beauty;  I  cannot  but  contrast  them  with 
the  scenes  of  a  twelve  month  ago,  when  all  around  me  was  deso- 
lation, nothing  to  be  seen  but  snow  and  sky;  and  no  animated 
objects  but  our  little  company,  and  they  struggling  hard  to  be 
merry  and  full  of  joy ;  but  still  little  more  life  remained  than  in 
the  huge  drifts  of  snow  around  us ;  but  every  thing  here  appears 
rife  with  life,  the  forests,  the  prairies  the  river  and  lakes,  and 
the  air,  all  teeming  with  animation  or  imparting  it  to  surround- 
ing objects  causing  the  husbandman,  the  mechanic,  the  merchant, 
and  all  mankind,  to  have  fine  dreams  of  the  future,  and  building 
up  their  prospects  on  what  they  seem  to  see  in  the  future.  I 
think  every  thing  and  every  body  around  me  is  happy  and  I 
alone  am  miserable,  it  seems  man  is  doomed  to  aspire  after  hap- 
piness; but  never  in  reality  to  obtain  it;  for  God  intended  that 
this  earth  should  ~be  earth  and  not  heaven  for  mortal  man. 

How  I  would  like  to  be  in  Dover  again  and  once  again  to 
see  the  scenes  and  to  call  up  recollections  of  the  past,  in  my 
happy  schoolboy  days.  And  then  to  visit  the  old  school  house, 
the  playing  ground;  and  most  of  all  my  own  dear  home  and  its 


102          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

occupants,  then  at  least  for  a  short  time  I  would  be  happy  as 
also  those  around  me.  I  should  hardly  know  some  of  the  places 
about  there;  and  people;  and  I  doubt  if  there  is  any  one  there 
would  know  me  now  if  I  were  to  arrive  there  or  meet  any  one 
of  them  here,  well  I  will  put  it  to  a  test  this  summer;  and  then 
I  shall  know  for  myself.  Now  do  not  think  that  I  will  disappoint 
you  in  coming  home,  for  if  I  keep  my  health  I  will  be  there  as 
soon  as  possible.  But  it  will  not  be  before  the  middle  of  the  sum- 
mer. I  would  like  to  know  that  ladie's  name  you  have  picked 
out  for  me  for  I  am  afraid  some  of  the  ladies  here  will  win  my 
affections  unless  I  have  some  one  else  to  guard  them  for  me. 
But  do  not  be  alarmed  about  my  getting  married  soon,  unless 
something  turns  up  favorable  beyond  expectation.  You  must 
excuse  this  short  letter  for  I  have  had  no  answer  to  my  last  one 
and  I  hardly  know  what  to  write  about.  I  must  close.  My 
school  will  be  out  in  a  few  days;  and  the  next  letter  you  write 
you  may  direct  it  to  Lawrence.  Give  my  love  to  all  and  a  kiss 
for  yourself.  Good  by 

[Your  son 

W.  C.  Quantrill.]  7 

7  This  letter  is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  The  signature  is  cut 
off,  which  was  done  by  W.  W.  Scott,  as  is  shown  by  his  writing  in  copying 
in  the  sentences  cut  away  with  the  signature.  He  probably  sent  the  signa- 
ture to  some  newspaper  with  an  article  on  Quantrill.  The  penmanship  of 
the  letter  is  delicate  and  good. 


CHAPTER  VI 

QUANTRELL  AS  CHARLEY  HART 
LAWRENCE 

QUANTRILL  must  have  gone  to  Lawrence  immediately 
after  his  school  closed.    On  the  25th  of  March,  1860,  he 
wrote  his  mother  that  his  school  would  close  in  a  few 
days,  directing  her  to  address  him  at  Lawrence.    He  must  have 
gone  early  in  April.    He  remained  in  the  vicinity  of  Lawrence,, 
making  that  his  home,  or  "headquarters,"  until  the  following 
December.1 


i  Henry  8.  Clarke,  of  Lawrence  (died  about  January  1,  1908),  says 
in  an  article  written  for  the  Kansas  Historical  Society,  published  in  the 
Seventh  Volume  of  the  Collections  of  the  Society,  that  he  saw  Quantrill  at 
Lawrence  first  in  June,  1858.  Mr.  Clarke  was  mistaken  as  to  the  year. 
In  June,  1858,  Quantrill  was  at  Fort  Bridger,  as  the  letter  of  E.  M.  Peck, 
Whittier,  California,  dated  December  28,  1907,  and  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author,  says.  Mr.  Peck  saw  him  there  at  that  time  and  describes 
his  reckless  gambling  in  the  camp  at  that  place.  It  was  evidently  in  1859 
that  Mr.  Clarke  first  saw  Quantrill  at  Lawrence,  for  he  says  that  Quantril) 
then  told  him  of  having  been  to  Utah  "as  a  teamster  with  a  government 
expedition  against  the  Mormons;  that  the  weather  turned  bad  and  the 
expedition  wintered  at  Fort  Bridger;  that  when  the  grass  started  in  the 
spring  he  started  back  East,  as  he  did  not  like  the  job." 

This  is  important,  as  it  shows  that  Quantrill  got  back  to  Lawrence 
from  the  Utah  and  Pike's  Peak  expedition  in  June,  1859,  though  he  did 
not  write  to  his  mother  until  July  30,  1859.  See  his  letter,  ante,  page  81. 
The  scene  described  by  Quantrill  in  that  letter,  of  his  partner  having  been 
shot,  and  which  Scott  says  was  the  foundation  for  the  lying  account  told 
by  him  to  the  Missourians  at  Morgan  Walker's,  was  probably  wholly  un- 
true. It  was  suggested,  in  all  probability,  by  the  occurrence  described 
by  Mr.  Clarke,  though  it  was  in  1859  instead  of  1858,  as  Mr.  Clarke  has  it: 

My  first  real  acquaintance  with  him  was  on  the  4th  day  of  July,  1858. 
The  people  of  Lawrence  held  a  celebration  on  that  day  across  the  Kansas 
river  on  the  Delaware  reserve.  John  C.  Vaughan,  then  living  at  Leaven- 
worth,  came  over  and  made  the  address  of  the  day.  While  the  Judge 
was  speaking,  there  was  an  outcry  a  little  distance  off  in  the  brush,  and 


104 

When  Quantrill  returned  from  Pike's  Peak  to  Lawrence 
(in  1859)  he  went  to  live  with  the  Delaware  Indians,  in  their 
Reservation  on  the  north  side  of  the  Kansas  river,  and  which  ex- 
tended up  the  river  to  the  west  of  Lawrence.  As  he  had  an  ac- 
quaintance with  the  Indians  as  the  result  of  his  previous  resi- 
dence among  them,  he  went  there  to  live  at  the  expiration  of  his 
school,  and  this  acquaintanceship  may  have  been  the  sole  cause 
of  his  going  to  Lawrence  to  live  in  the  spring  of  I860.2 

Quantrill  made  his  home  with  John  Sarcoxie,  son  of  Sar- 
coxie, chief  of  the  Delawares.  John  Sarcoxie  lived  on  Mud 
creek,  about  four  miles  northeast  of  Lawrence.  Quantrill  had  no 
occupation  among  the  Delawares,  and  he  did  not  work  at  any 
thing  while  he  lived  with  them.  He  told  other  people  that  he 
was  the  detective  for  the  Delaware  Nation.  He  spent  his  time 
riding  about  the  country  mounted  on  an  Indian  pony,  often  vis- 
iting Lawrence.  He  soon  began  to  frequent  the  north  ferry 
landing.  The  ferry  was  established  by  John  Baldwin  and  was 
the  first  ferry  at  Lawrence.  In  the  spring  of  1860  it  was  still 

several  of  us  ran  out  to  see  the  cause.  There  we  found  a  white  man  lying 
on  the  ground  in  an  unconscious  condition,  with  his  head  badly  cut  and 
hacked  up  by  an  Indian  tomahawk,  apparently.  Quantrell  was  one  of  the 
first  to  arrive  on  the  spot.  He  said  he  knew  the  Indian  who  committed 
the  assault,  and  went  on  to  say  that  the  man  had  enticed  the  Indian's 
wife  away,  and  this  was  done  for  revenge.  Quantrell  assisted  for  an  hour 
or  more  in  caring  for  the  man,  while  the  doctor  was  giving  restoratives, 
dressing  the  wounds,  etc.,  during  which  time  he  told  me  that  he  started 
for  Salt  Lake  the  fall  before  as  a  teamster  with  a  government  expedition 
against  the  Mormons.  .  .  .  He  also  went  on  to  say  that  he  was  living  at 
that  time  with  Henry  Bascom,  a  Delaware  Indian,  out  about  three  miles 
from  Lawrence.  Later  in  the  summer  I  saw  him  again,  and  he  said  he 
was  living  with  George  Sarcoxie,  another  Delaware  Indian,  about  five  miles 
out  from  Lawrence,  on  the  reserve. 

In  a  letter  written  by  Mr.  Clarke  to  W.  W.  Scott,  dated  Lawrence, 
Kansas,  April  7,  1898,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  he  says: 

1  think  the  first  I  saw  of  Quantrell  was  in  1859.     He  claimed,  at 
that  time,  to  have  been  across  the  plains  with  an  army  supply  train,  that 
accompanied  the  government  expedition  against  the  Mormons  just  previous 
to  that  time.     I  think  he  claimed  to  have  driven  a  team  for  the  govern- 
ment on  that  expedition. 

2  S.  S.  Herd,  of  Lawrence,  knew  Quantrill  during  his  residence  there. 
In  a  long  statement  to  the  author,  made  November  4,  1907,  Mr.  Herd  says 
Quantrill  made  his  appearance  at  Lawrence  about  the  middle  of  April  or 
first  of  May,  1860,  coming  from  the  Indian  settlements  in  the  Delaware 
Eeserve,  where  he  then  lived.     The  statement  is  in  the  Collection  of  the 
author. 


QUANTRILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART  105 

owned  by  Baldwin  and  operated  by  his  nephew  John  Baldwin 
and  S.  S.  Herd,  whom  he  employed  for  that  purpose.  Quantrill 
would  make  his  appearance  at  the  north  landing  about  nine  in 
the  morning.  He  would  hitch  the  pony  in  the  brush  and  then 
go  down  to  the  landing;  and  he  usually  remained  there  until 
near  night,  when  he  would  remount  the  pony  and  return  to  the 
home  of  Sarcoxie. 

The  ferry  was  the  loafmg-place  of  a  very  disreputable  gang 
of  border-ruffians.  They  were  thieves,  murderers,  kidnappers, 
negro-stealers.  Most  of  them  lived  about  Lawrence,  and  they 
were  in  close  communication  with  the  ruffians  who  lived  in  Mis- 
souri and  raided  the  Free-State  settlements  of  Kansas,  which 
circumstance  did  not  prevent  the  Kansas  ruffian  from  invading 
and  plundering  Missouri.  Among  these  lawless  characters  were 
the  McGees,  who  came  to  Kansas  from  Pennsylvania.  There  were 
Old  Man  McGee  and  his  two  sons,  Jacob  and  Thomas,  called 
Jake  and  Tom.  There  was  a  cousin  to  these,  a  very  hard  char- 
acter, who,  because  of  the  marital  calamity  which  befell  him  very 
frequently,  was  called  "Cuckold  Tom"  McGee.  The  McGees 
had  a  claim  on  the  Kansas  river  about  two  miles  east  of  Law- 
rence, in  the  timber,  surrounded  by  almost  impenetrable  brakes 
and  thickets;  and,  in  a  little  clearing  they  had  there,  they  had 
built  a  cabin  in  which  they  lived.  Living  with  them  was  another 
cousin,  named  Henry  McLaughlin,  of  character  equally  base  and 
vicious.  A  constant  associate  of  these  men  was  Esau  Sager,  a 
border-ruffian,  and  as  tough  a  character  as  lived  in  Kansas  Ter- 
ritory. There  were  Jack  Elliott,  John  Stropp,  Jay  Vince,  and 
Frank  Baldwin,  all  of  whom  would  make  raids  into  Missouri  to 
get  slaves  or  live  stock,  kidnap  a  free  negro  in  Kansas,  or  plun- 
der people  of  property  anywhere.3  They  acted  with  the  pro- 


3  G.  W.  W.  Yates,  Topeka,  Kansas,  is  the  son  of  the  late  William 
Yates,  one  of  the  first  settlers  of  Douglas  county,  Kansas.  William  Yates 
was  the  captain  of  one  of  the  Free-State  companies  in  Territorial  times. 
In  his  company  were  Jake  McGee  and  Tom  McGee.  So,  it  seems  that  the 
McGees  were  playing  a  double  game,  aiding  both  the  Free-State  and  pro- 
slavery  sides.  Their  attitude  may  have  suggested  that  course  to  Quantrill. 
G.  W.  W.  Yates  was  a  boy  in  Territorial  days,  and  can  scarcely  believe 
that  the  McGees  were  so  bad.  He  did  not  know  they  had  acted  with  the 
border-ruffians.  Colonel  O.  E.  Learnard,  an  early  settler  at  Lawrence,  told 


106          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

slavery  party  in  Kansas  and  rejoiced  in  turmoil  and  anarchy. 
The  above  list  is  by  no  means  complete ;  there  were  many  others. 
All  these  were  in  a  slight  degree  subject  to  Jacob  or  "Jake" 
Herd.  Herd  was  the  terror  of  the  Free-State  people,  and  he 
gloried  in  the  name,  "Jake  Herd,  the  Border-Ruffian."  He 
waylaid  and  captured  Dr.  John  Doy  and  his  party  on  the 
"underground  railway"  in  1859,  and  carried  them  to  Platte 
City,  Mo.,  and  cast  them  into  jail.  He  was  at  the  head  of  the 
lawless  bands  inhabiting  the  regions  about  Lawrence  —  tough 
citizens,  border-ruffians,  thieves,  highway  robbers,  kidnappers, 
drunken  carousers,  rioters,  brawlers,  reckless  of  human  life.* 

the  author  that  there  were  worse  characters  in  Kansas  than  the  McGees, 
and  that  the  McGees  had  served  under  him  in  the  service  of  the  Free-State 
party.  • 

The  author  would  not  knowingly  place  any  one  in  a  wrong  light.  He 
wishes  to  be  perfectly  fair,  and  state  facts  only.  The  information  here 
set  out  was  secured  from  8.  S.  Herd,  H.  S.  Clarke,  and  others,  and  is 
believed  to  be  reliable  and  accurate. 

4 Herd's  father  came  to  Kansas  from  Pennsylvania  about  1855  and 
settled  with  his  family  about  four  miles  southeast  of  Lecompton.  There 
is  a  biographical  sketch  of  Sidney  S.  Herd  in  the  Seventh  Volume  of  the 
Kansas  Historical  Collections;  he  is  now  a  well-to-do  and  respected  citizen 
of  Lawrence.  He  served  throughout  the  Civil  War  in  the  Union  army,  and 
he  was  a  gallant  soldier.  Jake  Herd  soon  became  notorious  for  his  devotion 
to  the  cause  of  the  rough  element  which  invaded  Kansas  from  Missouri 
from  political  motives  and  for  the  purpose  of  plunder.  He  was  not  in 
favor  of  a  "free  white  state,"  as  has  been  claimed,  but  was  a  partisan  of 
the  pro-slavery  element  which  had  its  root  in  the  Blue  Lodges  in  Missouri. 
He  was  a  kidnapper  of  free  negroes  who  came  to  Kansas,  selling  them 
"down  South,"  and  many  crimes  were  laid  at  his  door.  But  having  the 
protection  of  the  Federal  government,  he  escaped  the  consequences  of  his 
crimes.  As  showing  the  character  of  the  times  and  the  part  played  in 
them  by  Jake  Herd,  see  the  little  book  written  by  Dr.  John  Doy,  the  state- 
ments in  which  no  attempt  was  ever  made  to  refute,  and  from  which  the 
following  quotation  is  made: 

During  the  winter  of  1858-9,  several  attempts  were  made  by  a  gang 
of  unprincipled  fellows,  living  in  and  around  Lawrence  and  Lecompton,  to 
kidnap  a  number  of  colored  persons  from  the  city  of  Lawrence  and  its 
neighborhood,  with  the  intention  of  selling  them  into  slavery  in  Missouri. 

The  first  attempt  discovered,  was  made  upon  Charles  Fisher,  a  light 
mulatto,  who  kept  a  barber's  shop  in  Lawrence.  He  was  seized  and  put 
into  a  carriage;  jumping  out  was  chased  and  shot  at,  but  managed  to  evade 
the  ruffians.  On  the  next  evening,  another  colored  man,  William  Kiley, 
was  seized  and  carried  off;  but  he,  also,  succeeded  in  escaping  from  the 
room  in  which  he  was  bound  and  confined,  in  the  house  of  a  man  named 


QUANTRILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART  107 

These  were  the  acquaintances  made  by  Quantrill  at  the 
ferry.  He  would  sport  with  them  on  the  broad  sand-bars,  run- 
ning foot-races,  jumping,  wrestling,  drinking  occasionally,  shoot- 
ing, gambling.  In  a  short  time  he  was  regarded  as  one  of  the 
gang  and  began  to  cross  the  river,  spending  some  of  his  time  at 


Corel,  about  two  miles  from  Lawrence,  and  got  back  to  that  "city  of 
refuge. ' ' 

Much  feeling  was  excited  among  the  citizens  by  these  attempts,  and 
two  men  named  Fry  and  GOBS,  the  former  an  old  resident  of  Lawrence,  the 
latter  a  stranger,  were  arrested  and  examined  before  a  justice  of  the  Peace, 
upon  the  charge  of  kidnapping.  Sufficient  proof  of  their  complicity  was 
shown,  to  cause  them  to  be  committed  to  answer  at  the  U.  8.  District 
Court,  but  they  were  released  under  a  writ  of  habaes  corpus,  issued  by 
Judge  Elmore,  an  appointee  of  the  Administration,  and  the  largest  slave 
holder  in  Kansas.  This  was  in  October,  1858.  .  .  .  During  the  Autumn 
and  Winter,  the  attempts  at  kidnapping  became  more  and  more  frequent, 
and  were  sometimes  successful.  At  last  the  colored  people  in  Lawrence, 
finding  themselves  in  constant  danger,  applied  to  the  citizens  for  protection. 
In  consequence  of  this  application,  a  meeting  was  held  in  the  Court  House, 
on  or  about  the  18th  of  January,  1859,  to  take  the  matter  into  consideration. 
As  no  adequate  protection  against  the  insidious  attempts  of  the  kidnappers 
could  be  assured  to  the  colored  people  if  they  remained  in  Lawrence,  a 
removal  to  Iowa  was  agreed  upon,  and  some  money  raised  to  defray  the 
expenses. 

I  was  solicited  to  convey  these  people  as  far  as  Holton,  in  Calhoun 
County,  as  I  had  just  returned  from  a  tour  through  that  section  of  Kansas, 
and,  being  well  acquainted  with  the  roads  and  the  people  along  the  route, 
was  considered  the  person  best  fitted  for  the  task.  Holton  is  on  the  direct 
northern  route  traveled  by  the  Free  State  emigrants  in  1856. 

I  complied  with  the  request,  and  agreed  to  undertake  the  trip  with 
my  own  wagon  and  horses,  to  be  driven  by  my  eldest  son  Charles,  then 
twenty-five  years  of  age.  As  my  wagon  would  not  contain  all  the  passen- 
gers, another  wagon  and  pair  of  horses  were  obtained,  and  Mr.  dough,  a 
young  man  who  lived  near  Lawrence,  engaged  to  drive  them.  All  necessary 
preparations  were  made  for  the  journey;  beds,  bedding,  camp  utensils, 
provisions  and  some  arms  were  packed  into  the  wagons,  for  the  convenience 
of  camping  out,  and  for  defence.  The  passengers  were  eight  men,  three 
women,  and  two  children.  All  the  adults,  except  two,  showed  my  son  their 
free  papers.  All  had  them  except  these  two,  whom  we  knew  to  be  free 
men ;  one,  Wilson  Hays,  from  Cincinnati,  Ohio,  the  other,  Charles  Smith, 
from  Brownsville,  Penn.  They  had  both  been  employed  as  cooks,  at  the 
Eldredge  House,  in  Lawrence.  Our  entire  party  numbered  sixteen. 

We  started  early  in  the  morning  of  the  25th  of  January,  I  being  on 
horseback,  and  the  men  walking  behind  the  wagons,  which  contained  the 
stores  with  the  women  and  children;  crossed  the  Kansas  River  at  Law- 
rence, and  traveled  through  the  Delaware  Reservation  towards  Oscaloosa. 
When  about  twelve  miles  from  Lawrence,  and  eight  from  Oscaloosa,  having 
ascertained,  as  I  supposed,  that  the  road  was  clear,  I  requested  the  men 
to  get  into  the  wagons,  as  we  had  quite  a  long  descent  before  us,  and 
would  go  down  at  a  brisk  pace.  They  did  so,  and  then,  excepting  myself, 
all  the  party  were  in  the  wagons,  which  were  covered  a'nd  thus  effectually 
prevented  them  from  seeing  what  occurred  immediately  afterwards,  and 
from  defending  themselves. 


108          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

the  McGee  cabin,  and  doing  his  full  share  to  perpetuate  the 
reproach  expressed  in  the  sobriquet  of  "Cuckold  Tom."  His 
ideal  was  Jake  Herd,  possibly  the  most  daring  border-ruffian 
that  ever  lived  in  Kansas.  At  Lecompton,  Herd  was  the  right- 
arm  of  the  rough  element,  the  "terror-raiser"  of  the  pro-slavery 

At  the  bottom  of  the  hill,  on  the  right  of  the  road,  is  a  bluff;  from 
behind  this,  as  we  turned  it,  came  out  a  body  of  some  twenty,  or  more, 
armed  and  mounted  men.  Eleven  of  them  approached  with  leveled  rifles 
and  ordered  us  to  halt;  they  keeping,  however,  at  a  safe  distance  from 
our  revolvers.  My  son,  with  Wilson  Hays,  the  colored  man  from  Cincinnati, 
sprang  out  of  my  wagon,  which  was  ahead,  and  shouted:  "Father,  we're 
stopped:  shall  we  shoot?" 

Dismounting,  I  ran  round  to  the  off  side  of  the  wagon,  telling  them 
to  hold  on  till  I  ascertained  who  the  men  were  and  what  they  wanted.  As 
I  advanced  towards  the  latter,  demanding  their  business,  some  of  them 
cried  out,  "Shoot  him!  shoot  him!"  and  aimed  their  guns  at  me.  I  told 
them  to  shoot  me  if  they  wanted  to,  but  not  to  fire  at  the  wagons,  as  there 
were  women  and  children  in  them. 

I  felt  perfectly  reckless,  seeing  that  we  were  overpowered,  and  that, 
hampered  as  the  party  were  in  the  wagons,  we  could  do  nothing,  while  I 
anticipated  the  fate  in  store  for  our  poor  passengers;  for  I  now  recognized 
five  of  the  assailants:  two  young  men  named  McGee,  living  near  Franklin; 
a  fellow  named  Whitley,  living  in  Lawrence;  Dr.  Garvin,  the  modern 
Democratic  postmaster  of  that  city;  and  a  notorious  ruffian  .and  kidnapper, 
Jake  Hurd,  who  lived  about  four  miles  from  Lecompton.  These  were  all 
Northern  men  by  birth,  the  first  two  being  from  Illinois,  Whitley  from 
Ohio,  Hurd  from  Pennsylvania,  and  Garvin  from  Indiana  or  Ills. 

I  spoke  to  these  men  separately,  asking  if  they  had  any  process 
against  us,  that  they  stopped  us  on  the  highway.  The  only  replies  were 
oaths,  threats,  and  revolvers  thrust  in  our  face. 

Turning  to  Whitley  I  said,  "What?  You  here,  Whitley?  A  Free 
State  man!  Where's  your  process?" 

"Here  it  is,"  the  brute  replied,  putting  the  muzzle  of  his  revolver 
to  my  head. 

"You  will  have  to  pay  for  this,"  was  my  answer. 

I  then  asked  the  others  if  they  had  any  papers  to  show  that  any  of 
the  colored  people  were  claimed  as  slaves,  or  if  their  professed  owners  were 
present.  The  only  replies  were  bitter  denunciations  of  "nigger  thieves," 
and  finally  an  offer  of  five  hundred  dollars,  from  a  man  who  was  a  stranger 
to  me,  if  I  would  drive  the  colored  people  to  the  Eialto  Ferry,  on  the 
Missouri  Kiver,  opposite  Weston. 

I  told  him  no  teams  of  mine  should  ever  be  used  to  carry  a  human 
being  into  slavery  with  my  consent. 

"You  shall  go  any  how,  d — n  you.  We  don't  mean  to  let  you  go 
back  and  bring  an  infernal  gang  of  G — d  d — d  abolitionists  on  us." 

' ' That 's  your  business, ' '  said  I.     "I  should  not  go  if  I  could  help  it. ' ' 

A  portion  of  the  party  then  dismounted  and  went  towards  the  wagons, 
the  rest  keeping  their  rifles  leveled  upon  us.  The  men  and  women  were 
ordered  out  and  tied,  one  by  one,  as  they  descended  from  the  wagons. 

My  son  had  a  gun  in  his  hands  which  he  discharged  into  the  air, 
finding  that  resistance  was  useless.  At  the  same  time  Jake  Hurd  came 
near  shooting  himself  as  he  tried  to  draw  a  gun  out  of  the  wagon.  The 
hammer  caught  in  some  bedding,  and  the  contents  of  the  barrel  passed 


QUANTRILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART  109 

party  in  Kansas.  He  was  known  in  every  town  on  the  border 
as  being  "sound  on  the  goose/'  a  holy  terror,  violent,  quick  and 
deadly  with  the  revolver,  fearless  and  daring,  and  a  man  who 
would  risk  his  life  to  capture  a  negro,  either  free  or  a  runaway 
slave.  Quantrill's  admiration  for  Herd  was  unbounded.  They 
differed  in  that  Herd  was  open,  bold,  loud  of  tongue,  drunken, 
relying  alone  upon  his  force  and  courage  for  success,  while  Quan- 
trill  was  silent,  sober,  unpretending,  scheming,  depending  more 
upon  cunning,  deceit,  and  intrigue  than  courage  or  force  in 
reaching  his  ends. 

Upon  what  circumstances  Quantrill  adopted  the  name  Char- 
ley Hart  we  do  not  know.  He  assumed  it  when  he  started  to 
Utah  with  the  expedition  to  succor  General  Johnston  in  1858. s 


between  his  arm  and  body.     [Deflected  by  a  button  on  his  overcoat.  —  The 
author.] 

"I  wish  to  the  Lord  it  had  shot  you  through  the  heart,  Jake!"  I 
exclaimed  involuntarily. 

Hurd  foamed  out,  "I'll  shoot  you,  G — d  d — n  you." 

"Do  so,"  I  replied,  "and  I'll  give  you  the  best  horse  I  own." 

After  the  colored  people  were  all  secured,  three  of  the  gang  seized 
me  and  attempted  to  tie  my  hands  behind  my  back,  but  seeing  that  my 
son's  arms  were  already  tied,  I  broke  away  from  them  and  went  up  to 
Hurd,  asking  him  to  loose  him.  He  would  not,  and  I  untied  the  rope 
myself.  Hurd  threatened  to  shoot  me,  but  I  paid  no  attention  to  his 
threats. 

Finding  that  we  valued  life  cheaper  than  they  supposed,  they  con- 
sented that  Charles  and  I  should  go  unbound,  provided  we  would  go 
quietly,  urging  at  the  same  time  the  necessity  of  keeping  us  till  they  were 
beyond  the  reach  of  pursuit,  and  promising  that,  when  we  reached  the 
Kialto  Ferry,  our  property  should  be  restored  to  us  and  we  be  free  to 
return,  with  good  pay  for  our  time  and  trouble.  Of  course  we  had  no 
choice  but  to  submit. 

Shortly  afterwards,  seeing  the  two  colored  men  before  named  with 
their  arms  tied,  I  proceeded  to  loose  them  also,  telling  the  kidnappers  that 
I  knew  they  were  free  men. 

Our  captors  were  much  angered  by  our  reckless  acts  and  speech,  and 
held  a  consultation  as  to  what  should  be  done  with  us.  Jake  Hurd  and 
the  McGees  advised  our  murder,  saying,  "Dead  men  tell  no  tales."  Others 
advised  a  hasty  retreat,  as  they  thought  that  an  armed  escort  might  be 
expected  from  Lawrence.  This  startled  them ;  I  was  ordered  to  get  on  my 
horse,  the  rest  were  hurried  into  wagons;  then,  with  a  man  on  each  side 
whipping  the'  teams,  we  drove  furiously  towards  Leavenworth.  Camped 
two  miles  from  Leavenworth.  About  midnight  drove  on  to  Eialto  Ferry 
opposite  Weston.  Large  bonfire  and  many  armed  men  there  —  Taken  to 
Weston.  Then  to  Platte  City  and  put  in  jail  January  28th. 

5  The  description  given  by  K.  M.  Peck  of  Quantrill  at  Fort  Bridger 
(see  note,  ante,  page  75)  is  a  good  one.  Peck  states  that  he  was  then 


110          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

He  was  known  by  no  other  name  on  that  trip,  and  he  gave  no 
other  name  in  Lawrence  in  either  1859  or  1860.  S.  S.  Herd  says 
he  knew  Quantrill  only  as  Charley  Hart  and  did  not  hear  the 
name  Quantrill  until  it  became  notorious  along  the  border  at  a 
later  day ;  and  neither  did  H.  S.  Clarke.  Judge  Samuel  A.  Riggs 
prosecuted  him  at  Lawrence  in  1860  for  burglary  and  larceny, 
for  arson  and  kidnapping,  under  the  name  of  Charley  Hart.6 
Mr.  Holland  Wheeler,  of  Lawrence,  knew  him  at  this  time.  He 
describes  Quantrill  as  he  appeared  there  about  June,  1860.  He 
stopped  at  the  hotel  owned  by  Nathan  Stone  and  registered  as 
Charley  Hart.  Stone  was  in  his  confidence  and  knew  his  name 
to  be  William  C.  Quantrill,  having  that  fact  of  record  on  the  last 
page  of  his  hotel  register.? 

and  there  known  as  Charley  Hart.  His  description  agrees  with  that  given 
by  Mr.  Clarke  in  the  article  before  referred  to,  which  is  as  follows: 

I  first  saw  Quantrill  in  June,  1858  (1859).  He  was  about  twenty-one 
years  old,  and,  as  I  remember  him,  was  about  five  feet  ten  inches  tall, 
rather  slight  of  stature,  weighing,  perhaps,  150  pounds,  walked  with  an  easy, 
slouchy  gait,  head  bent  a  little  forward,  eyes  cast  downward,  hair  of  a 
yellowish-brown  color,  cut  straight  around  the  neck  about  even  with  the 
lower  part  of  the  ear,  the  end  of  the  hair  turned  under  towards  the  neck. 
He  wore  a  drab  corduroy  suit,  with  pants  tucked  into  tops  of  his  high- 
heeled  boots:  also  a  drab  slouch  hat. 

Mr.  Clarke  was  a  man  much  respected  in  Lawrence  for  his  worth  as  a 
citizen  and  for  his  upright  life.  There  is  a  biographical  sketch  of  him  in 
the  Seventh  Volume,  Kansas  Historical  Collections. 

6  See  the  statement  of  Judge  Riggs,  in  the  Seventh  Volume,  Kansas 
Historical  Collections,  where  there  is,  also,  a  biographical  sketch  of  the 
judge.     He  is  a  lawyer  of  ability  and  served  long  as  judge  of  the  district 
court  in  his  district.     He  is  an  upright  man  and  is  highly  regarded  by 
the  people  of  Lawrence,  where  he  has  lived  for  half  a  century. 

7  See  account  written  by  Wheeler,  published  in  the  Seventh  Volume, 
Kansas  Historical  Collections.     His  description  of  Quantrill  is  as  follows: 

I  came  to  Kansas  in  1858.  Have  resided  at  Lawrence  most  of  the 
time  since;  in  the  spring  of  1860  was  at  the  old  Whitney  House,  kept  by 
Nathan  Stone.  One  day,  perhaps  in  June,  there  came  a  lone  footman 
across  the  ferry.  He  was  dressed  with  corduroy  pants  tucked  into  his 
boots,  woolen  shirt,  slouch  hat,  and  carried  an  oilcloth  grip.  He  was  about 
five  feet  nine  inches  in  height,  bow-legged,  weight  about  150  or  160  pounds, 
sandy  hair,  rather  hooked  nose,  and  had  a  peculiar  droop  to  his  eyelids. 
He  walked  into  the  hotel  office,  deposited  the  grip,  and  registered  as 
Charles  Hart.  He  left  the  next  morning,  leaving  the  grip  for  his  bill. 
Some  days  after  he  returned.  Mr.  Stone,  calling  me  to  the  desk,  opened 
the  day-book  and  showed  me  on  the  back  page  the  name  Wm.  C.  Quantrill, 
remarking,  ' '  That  is  Hart 's  real  name.  He  is  a  detective  for  the  Delaware 
Indians. ' '  Quantrill  was  at  the  hotel  at  times  from  this  on  up  to  quite 
late  in  the  fall.  He  usually  had  the  same  room  with  myself.  During 


QUANTRILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART  111 

All  the  time  Quantrill  lived  in  and  about  Lawrence  he  was 
known  as  Charley  Hart.  Very  few  people  there  knew  that  he 
had  any  other  name.  His  true  name  was  known  about  Osa- 
watomie  and  Stanton,  and  it  became  known  there  that  he  was 
living  at  Lawrence  under  the  assumed  name  of  Charley  Hart. 
So,  the  people  of  Lykins  (Miami)  county  were  never  deceived 
as  to  his  identity. 

Charley  Hart  and  William  C.  Quantrill  have  herein  now 
been  shown  to  have  been  identical.  There  never  was  any  man 
named  Charley  Hart  in  Kansas.  William  C.  Quantrill  falsely 
represented  himself  to  be  Charley  Hart,  and  he  did  so  because  of 
the  criminal  life  he  intended  to  lead  and  did  lead.  As  there 
never  can  be  any  question  as  to  his  identity,  Quantrill  will  be 
spoken  of  by  his  true  name  hereinafter.  But  it  must  be  remem- 
bered that  to  the  people  of  Lawrence  he  was  Charley  Hart.  Few 
of  them  knew  he  was  Quantrill  until  after  he  became  a  bush- 
whacker in  Missouri.  And  this  name  "Charley"  stuck  to  him  to 
his  death.  In  Missouri  he  was  known  as  "Charley"  Quantrill, 
and  he  is  so  known  to  this  day  by  his  followers  there.  In  most 
books  by  Missourians  in  which  he  is  mentioned  his  name  is  given 
as  Charles  William  Quantrill.8 


the  very  warm  nights  we  frequently  slept  on  the  roof  of  the  veranda. 
(Often  I  borrowed  a  pistol  to  put  under  my  pillow.  Why?  Well,  I  don't 
know  myself.) 

Quantrill  told  me  of  his  trip  to  New  Mexico  (Utah)  a  short  time 
before.  He  called  Paola  his  home.  His  most  usual  companions  were  the 
Miller  brothers  and  one  Baldwin.  He  also  was  about  Dean's  shop.  Had 
a  lady  friend  who  was  in  town  at  times.  Saw  him  riding  with  her  in  a 
carriage  several  times.  He  told  me  about  her;  all  of  which  I  forget. 
Quantrill  and  myself  frequently  went  down  on  the  river  bank  to  practice 
pistol  shooting.  He  was  very  friendly  with  me. 

8  A.  M.  Winner,  Esq.,  Kansas  City,  Mo.,  has  Quantrill  'a  watch. 
Quantrill  lost  this  watch  in  an  orchard  in  Jackson  county  during  the  war. 
More  than  thirty  years  after  it  was  lost  there  the  orchard  was  cut  down 
and  the  ground  plowed  up,  when  the  watch  was  found.  The  finder  of  the 
watch  gave  it  to  Mr.  Winner,  who  has  shown  it  to  the  author.  On  the 
inside  of  the  back  lid  or  cover  of  the  case  is  cut  with  some  sharp  instru- 
ment the  name,  ' '  Charley  Quantrill. ' '  Quantrill  called  attention  to  the  loss 
of  his  watch  a  few  minutes  after  it  disappeared  and  searched  for  it  for  an 
hour  or  more.  He  and  his  men  got  their  dinner  at  the  home  of  the  man 
who  owned  the  orchard,  and  whose  name  the  author  does  not  now  recall. 
He  was  a  prominent  citizen  of  Jackson  county,  and  Quantrill  requested 


112          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

him  to  keep  the  matter  in  mind  and  find  the  watch  if  he  could,  which  he 
did   many    years    afterward. 

In  the  Kansas  City  Times,  Dec.  1,  1894,  appears  the  following  account 
of  the  finding  of  the  watch: 

A  very  interesting  relic,  interesting  from  the  historic  relations  of  the 
man  who  once  owned  it,  was  found  on  the  farm  of  Ink  Hicklin  at  Green- 
wood, near  Lee's  Summit,  a  few  weeks  ago.  It  is  the  watch  once  carried 
by  the  famous  renegade,  Charles  Quantrell,  and  lost  by  him  on  Mr.  Hicklin 's 
farm  thirty-two  years  ago.  Quantrell  and  his  band  were  riding  through 
the  country,  pursued  by  the  federal  troops  at  the  time  the  watch  was  lost, 
and  while  hunting  for  it  Quantrell  barely  escaped  being  captured.  The 
day  after  it  was  lost  Quantrell  returned,  and  with  Mr.  Ink  Hicklin,  now 
living  on  the  farm  upon  which  the  watch  was  lost,  hunted  for  it,  but 
failed  to  find  it.  The  watch  lay  there  for  thirty-two  years  and  was 
picked  up  by  the  man  who  had  helped  its  owner  look  for  it,  when  the 
owner's  bones  had  been  dust  for  many  years  and  his  daring  and  heartless 
deeds  almost  forgotten,  save  for  the  blot  on  the  scroll  of  history. 

Why  Quantrell  should  risk  being  captured  to  search  for  the  watch 
is  a  puzzling  question,  certainly  not  because  of  its  intrinsic  value,  as  the 
case  is  of  brass,  at  one  time  gold  plated.  It  is  a  hunting  case,  and  closed 
together  well,  for  the  wheels  are  almost  intact  after  all  the  years  it  has 
been  exposed  to  the  elements. 

The  name  "Charles  Quantrell"  is  rudely  cut  on  the  inner  side  of 
the  back  cover  of  the  case,  and  looks  as  if  it  had  been  done  with  a  pocket 
knife.  That  the  watch  is  genuine,  Daniel  Williams  of  Greenwood  will 
swear,  for  he  saw  Quantrell  cut  the  name  on  the  case.  The  watch  belongs 
to  Jack  Atkins,  a  jeweler  at  Greenwood,  and  it  was  when  he  poured  some 
acid  on  it  to  find  what  it  was  made  of  that  the  name  was  made  legible. 
Mr.  Atkins  sent  the  watch  to  The  Star  for  inspection,-and  it  is  undoubtedly 
genuine.  All  the  old  settlers  in  the  neighborhood  where  it  was  lost  and 
found  remember  the  circumstance  of  Quantrell  losing  his  watch. 

In  the  Collection  of  the  author  there  are  some  letters  from  Samuel 
Walker,  long  a  resident  of  Lawrence,  to  W.  W.  Scott.  In  one  of  these 
letters,  dated  Lawrence,  Kansas,  April  14,  1889,  Walker  says: 

He  never  went  by  any  other  name  here  than  Hart.  I  never  heard  the 
name  Quantrill  until  after  he  went  to  Mo. 

Mr.  Walker  was  Sheriff  of  Douglas  county  and  knew  Hart  well,  hav- 
ing made  repeated  efforts  to  arrest  him  for  crimes  committed  there. 


CHAPTEE  VII 

QUANTRILL  AS   CHARLEY   HART  —  A   BORDER-RUFFIAN 
AT    LAWRENCE 

QUANTRILL  took  part  in  the  expeditions  and  forays  of 
the  kidnappers  and  ruffians  as  soon  as  he  was  well  enough 
known  to  have  their  confidence,  which  must  have  been 
within  a  month  or  two  from  the  time  he  took  up  his  abode  again 
with  the  Dela wares.  These  forays  and  thieving  excursions  did 
not  occupy  all  the  time  of  the  ruffians.  They  transacted  their 
business  much  as  robbers  and  highwaymen  transact  theirs  to-day 
—  by  making  a  raid  and  disposing  of  their  plunder  secured,  then 
lounging  and  loafing  about  liquor-shops  and  skulking  through 
thickets  with  fallen  women  for  a  time  before  again  taking  to  the 
road.  Associating  with  fallen  women  was  Quantrill's  greatest 
weakness;  his  other  forms  of  dissipation  were  few,  gambling 
being  one  of  them.  Herd  says  that  his  living  among  the  Indians 
first  caused  the  McGees  to  think  there  might  be  something  in 
Quantrill  that  would  make  him  one  of  their  band.1  While  Quan- 

i  There  is  a  little  discrepancy  in  Herd's  statements,  that  published 
in  the  Kansas  Historical  Collection,  differing  somewhat  from  what  he  told 
the  author.  The  published  statement  is  the  first  public  utterance  he  made 
on  the  subject,  and  he  was  in  making  it  naturally  cautious,  having  been 
to  some  extent  associated  with  Quantrill.  But  there  is  substantial  agree- 
ment in  all  he  has  said  —  the  differences  being  caused  by  the  evident  fact 
that  he  has  not  yet  told  the  whole  story  of  what  he  knows  of  Quantrill's 
actions.  Here  is  his  account  of  Quantrill's  first  appearance  and  of  his 
becoming  acquainted  with  the  characters  at  Lawrence,  taken  from  the 
Kansas  Historical  Collections: 

During  the  summer  of  1858,  and  for  a  year  or  two  thereafter,  I  was 
much  of  the  time  employed  with  the  Baldwin  boys  operating  the  old  rope 
ferry  across  the  Kansas  river  at  this  point,  connecting  Lawrence  with  the 
Delaware  Indian  reserve. 

It  was  here  at  the  ferry  where  I  first  met  W.  C.  Quantrill,  then  under 
the  assumed  name  of  Charles  Hart.  Hart  claimed  then  to  be  stopping  with 
a  son  of  Sarcoxie,  a  Delaware  chief,  a  few  miles  out  on  the  reserve,  and 
he  frequently  crossed  the  river  with  us  going  to  and  from  Lawrence.  At 


114          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

trill  became  as  reckless  as  any  of  the  gang  of  which  he  was  a 
part,  he  ever  tried  to  remain  out  of  the  public  eye.  And  he  was, 
while  a  border-ruffian,  trying  to  act  with  the  radical  anti-slavery 
people  at  Lawrence.  He  could  not  be  true  to  any  cause,  for, 
of  moral  character,  the  foundation  of  devotion,  he  was  devoid. 
Being  false  at  heart  and  governed  by  self-interest  solely,  it  was 
natural  that  he  should  be  two-faced,  untrue  to  everything  and 
everybody,  governed  entirely  by  what  he  believed  would  make 
him  the  most  money.  His  old  trait  of  sudden  disappearances 
and  reappearances  was  observed  by  his  associates  at  Lawrence. 
One  day  a  negro  came  out  of  the  woods  on  the  old  Indian 
trail  leading  through  the  Delaware  Reserve  to  the  ferry  at  Law- 
rence. He  was  young  and  strong,  but  he  seemed  worn  and 
weary  from  running.  Herd  was  at  work  on  the  ferry-boat,  and 
the  negro  inquired  of  him  the  way  to  the  house  of  James  H. 
Lane,  saying  he  desired  to  go  there.  Herd  put  him  across  the 
river.  Quantrill  and  Frank  Baldwin  were  loafing  at  the  south 
landing.  Herd  told  them  where  the  negro  desired  to  go  and 
turned  him  over  to  them,  telling  him  they  would  take  him  to 
Lane's  house.  They  said  they  would  take  him  to  Lane's  house, 
certainly  they  would.  Then  they  told  him  to  "come  along." 
The  negro  went  with  Quantrill  and  Baldwin,  and,  believing  that 
he  was  with  friends,  he  answered  their  questions  freely.  He 
had  escaped  from  his  owner,  a  widow  named  Gaines,  who  lived 
at  Platte  City,  Mo.  He  had  come  through  Leavenworth  and  the 
Delaware  Reserve,  believing  that  if  he  could  get  to  Lane's  house 


first  Quantrill  appeared  to  be  rather  reticent,  but  after  a  time,  crossing 
frequently  as  he  did,  he  appeared  to  become  more  sociable,  and  often  stopped 
and  chatted  with  the  boys,  and  after  a  time  became  more  chummy,  often 
spending  a  half  hour  or  longer  with  us  when  we  were  not  busy,  practicing 
jumping  with  the  boys,  running  short  foot-races,  etc.  He  did  not  strike 
me  as  having  any  braggadocio  or  desire  to  make  any  display  in  any  way. 
If  he  had  any  money,  to  amount  to  anything,  no  one  knew  it  but  himself. 
He  did  not  appear  to  have  any  business  or  means  of  support,  so  far  as  I 
knew.  I  don't  think  he  had  any  very  positive  convictions  on  questions  that 
were  agitating  the  territory  at  that  time;  if  he  did,  he  certainly  kept 
them  to  himself.  One  thing  is  certain,  he  was  always  willing  to  go  into 
anything  that  turned  up  that  had  a  dollar  in  it  for  Charley  Hart. 

During  my  acquaintance  with  Quantrill,  he  did  not  appear  to  be 
permanently  located  in  any  place,  and  would  frequently  leave  without  any 
warning  to  any  one  of  us,  and  be  gone  for  days,  and  sometimes  weeks,  and 
then  turn  up  again  as  unexpectedly  as  he  had  departed. 


A  BORDER-RUFFIAN  AT  LAWRENCE  115 

he  would  be  safe  —  and  so  he  would  have  been.     They  took  him 
to  McGee 's. 

That  night  Quantrill,  Jake  McGee  and  Frank  Baldwin  tied 
the  negro  on  a  horse  and  took  him  to  Westport,  stopping  in  the 
woods  near  the  town.  There  McGee  left  the  negro  to  be  guarded 
by  Quantrill  and  Baldwin,  while  he  rode  to  Platte  City  to 
arrange  with  the  widow  for  as  large  a  reward  as  could  be  wrung 
from  her  for  the  slave 's  return.  She  agreed  to  pay  five  hundred 
dollars  for  his  return,  though  the  statutory  reward  was  but  two 
hundred  dollars.  McGee  went  back  to  Westport,  and  the  next 
day  they  took  the  negro  to  Platte  City  and  received  the  sum 
agreed  upon  —  all  in  new  twenty-dollar  bills  of  some  Missouri 
bank.  The  widow  asked  the  slave  why  he  had  run  away,  and  he 
said  the  keeper  of  the  livery  stable  had  induced  him  to  do  it. 
When  Quantrill  and  associates  returned  to  Lawrence  they  gave 
Herd  one  hundred  dollars  of  the  money  they  had  received  for 
taking  the  negro  back  to  Missouri.3 


2  When  the  author  heard  this  story  from  Herd  he  wrote  to  Hon.  E.  P. 
C.  Wilson,  of  Platte  City,  to  secure  verification  of  it.  At  first  Mr.  Wilson 
could  find  no  evidence  of  such  an  occurrence,  and  so  wrote  me.  Later, 
he  secured  the  evidence,  when  he  wrote  me  the  following  letter,  which 
fully  confirms  Herd's  account: 

Platte  City,  Mo.,  Nov.  27,  1907. 

Dear  Mr.  Connelley: 

I  have  just  had  a  conversation  with  an  aged  negro,  now  known 
here  as  ' '  Old  Milt ' '  Paxton  —  having  belonged  to  our  old  friend,  Mr.  W. 
M.  Paxton  —  who  told  me  that  just  before  the  breaking  out  of  the  war, 
"Ike"  Gaines,  a  slave  belonging  to  Joanna  Gaines,  widow  of  E.  P.  Gaines, 
was  persuaded  off,  went,  or  was  taken  to  Kansas,  and  then  brought  back 
bound  with  ropes  across  the  Missouri,  delivered  to  his  owner,  who  paid  the 
statutory  reward  —  maybe  more  than  that  sum ;  —  that  Miles  Harrington, 
a  wealthy  man  here,  the  son-in-law  of  Mrs.  Gaines,  transacted  all  the 
business  pertaining  to  the  recovery  of  "Ike."  Ike,  the  old  negro  thinks, 
lives  now  in  Wathena,  Kansas.  Harrington  and  his  whole  family  are,  I 
think,  now  dead. 

There  is,  then,  no  doubt  that  there  was  a  Mrs.  Gaines  living  here  at 
the  time  indicated;  that  her  slave,  Ike,  ran  or  was  enticed  away,  and  was 
brought  back  "in  ropes"  and  returned  to  his  mistress  (Widow  Gaines)  — 
who  paid  a  substantial  reward  —  how  much  is  not  positively  known.  Old 
Milt  says  that  sort  of  thing  was  going  on  right  along  then.  I  think  now 
Q.  was  in  the  game  —  and  your  informant  was  probably  correct  in  his 
statement. 

Tours  truly, 

E.  P.  C.  Wilson. 
Eeference  to  Annals  of  Platte  County,  Missouri,  by  W.  M.  Paxton, 


116          QUANTEILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Soon  after  his  arrival  at  Lawrence  from  returning  "Ike" 
Gaines  to  bondage  Quantrill  suddenly  disappeared.  He  was 
gone  some  time  —  two  or  three  weeks  —  when  he  suddenly  made 
his  appearance  riding  a  race-horse,  a  sorrel  with  white  feet  and 
legs,  and  called  "White  Stockings."  Quantrill  claimed  to  have 
bought  the  horse  at  or  near  Paola;  it  was  his  intention  to  win 
some  money  with  the  racer.  William  Mulkey,  one  of  the  famous 
pioneers  of  Kansas  City,  Mo.,  was  at  that  time  (and  long  after- 
wards) a  breeder  and  trainer  of  race-horses.  He  then  had  a 
horse  with  a  reputation  for  speed  on  the  track,  known  as  "Mul- 
key 's  Colt ' '  throughout  western  Missouri  and  Kansas.  Quantrill 
believed  that  White  Stockings  could  beat  Mulkey 's  Colt.  He, 
Herd  and  Frank  Baldwin  took  QuantrilPs  horse  to  Westport  to 
arrange  for  a  race.  Mulkey  was  a  shrewd  man  and  a  good  judge 
of  horses.  Fearing  that  Mulkey  would  not  bet  much  on  his  colt 
after  having  seen  White  Stockings,  Quantrill  put  on  his  horse 
a  high-horned  heavy  saddle  and  brought  him  out  muddy  and 
unkempt  generally.  Mulkey  was  deceived  and  bet  one  hundred 
and  fifty  dollars  on  his  colt.  Baldwin  rode  White  Stockings  in 
the  race,  and  Mulkey 's  Colt  was  badly  beaten.  The  party 
remained  about  Westport  two  or  three  weeks,  but  finding  no 
further  opportunity  for  a  race  they  left  town.  Quantrill  and 
Baldwin  took  the  horse  south  along  the  state  line  and  were  gone 
a  week  or  two,  when  they  returned  without  the  horse.  They 
were  among  the  Indians  —  perhaps  the  Cherokees.  This  was  in 
the  early  part  of  the  summer  of  1860.3 

the  most  complete  history  ever  written  of  any  county  in  the  United  States, 
shows  the  following,  page  187: 

EICHAED  P.  GAINES,  b.  in  1789;  d.  Sept.  6,  1854;  m'd  in  Ken- 
tucky, Joanna  Tinder,  who  survived  him.  He  came  to  Platte  City  in  1842, 
and  purchased  of  J.  V.  Cockrell  the  frame  hotel  on  the  southeast  corner  of 
what  is  now  the  public  square.  He  was  a  fat  and  jolly  landlord,  and 
highly  esteemed. 

It  was  the  widow  of  Eichard  P.  Gaines  who  had  to  redeem  her  slave 
"Ike"  from  Quantrill  and  his  gang,  and  they  wrung  from  her  more  than 
twice  the  lawful  reward. 

3  In  his  published  account,  Herd  says  of  this  horse : 

In  the  summer  of  1860  he  suddenly  disappeared,  and  after  an  absence 
of  some  time  he  as  suddenly  returned  with  a  running  horse,  named  "White 
Stockings,"  which  he  claimed  he  had  bought  in  the  neighborhood  of  Paola, 
Kansas.  On  this  occasion  he  insisted  that  Frank  Baldwin  and  myself 


A  BORDER-RUFFIAN  AT  LAWRENCE  117 

It  is  believed  that  it  was  on  the  trip  to  dispose  of  the  race- 
horse that  Quantrill  conceived  the  idea  of  bartering  with  the 
Missourians  and  preying  upon  them  through  treachery.  There 
was  much  feeling  in  Jackson  county  (and  other  border  counties) 
against  Captain  John  E.  Stewart,  who  lived  about  four  miles 
south  of  Lawrence,  whose  claim  was  in  the  heavily  wooded  bot- 
tom of  the  Wakarusa,  where  the  creek  makes  a  sort  of  horse- 
shoe bend.  Stewart  had  built  a  strong  fort  on  his  claim.*  He 

should  accompany  him  to  Jackson  County,  Missouri,  and  assist  him  in 
making  some  races,  more  particularly  with  the  "Mulkey  colt,"  that  had 
quite  a  reputation  as  a  runner.  Baldwin  and  I  went  on  that  trip,  and 
were  gone  about  three  weeks  with  him.  Seeing  no  chance  for  further  sport 
in  that  community,  Baldwin  and  I  decided  to  come  back  to  Lawrence,  and 
Quantrill  said  he  was  going  to  start  south,  down,  perhaps,  as  far  as  Fort 
Scott,  Kan.,  with  his  horse.  We  left  him  at  McGees  and  returned  to 
Lawrence. 

Herd  says  both  he  and  Baldwin  returned,  leaving  Quantrill  at  McGee's 
which  must  be  an  error,  for  the  McGees  lived  within  two  miles  of  Lawrence. 
The  account  in  the  text  was  given  by  Herd  to  the  author.  But  this  may 
mean  that  they  left  him  at  the  hotel  of  Milton  McGee,  in  Kansas  City,  Mo. 

4  Stewart's  claim  is  the  present  Douglas  County  "Poor  Farm."  It 
is  the  northwest  quarter  of  Section  twenty,  Township  thirteen,  Eange 
twenty.  It  was  surrounded  by  timber  and  thickets  of  brush,  in  a  secluded 
and  inaccessible  place. 

In  a  clipping  from  the  Lawrence  Tribune,  no  date,  now  in  the  Collec- 
tion of  the  author,  is  the  following  concerning  John  E.  Stewart: 

He  [Quantrill]  professed  to  be  an  ardent  and  very  radical  Abolitionist, 
and  soon  became  intimately  acquainted  with  the  leading  men  of  that  class, 
among  whom  John  E.  Stewart  was  a  leading  spirit,  and  an  acknowledged 
chief.  Stewart  had  been  a  Methodist  minister  in  good  standing  and  repute 
before  coming  to  Kansas,  and  had  preached  to  good  acceptance  at  Salem, 
N.  H.,  for  a  considerable  time.  He  lived  in  1859-60  on  a  farm  claim 
about  four  miles  Southeast  of  Lawrence  on  what  is  now  the  "Douglas 
County  Poor  Farm"  and  his  house  was  a  common  rendezvous  of  a  certain 
class  of  extreme  "Free  State"  men  and  of  slaves  escaping  from  Missouri. 
Among  others  who  are  remembered  as  frequenting  at  Stewart 's  may  be 
mentioned  John  H.  Kagi  and  young  Coppic,  who  afterwards  went  with 
old  John  Brown  on  his  Harper 's  Ferry  enterprise.  Quantrell  alias  ' '  Charley 
Hart"  soon  became  extremely  intimate  with  Stewart,  and  when  he  was  not 
at  the  City  Hotel  it  was  commonly  supposed  that  he  might  be  found  at 
Stewart's;  though  in  point  of  fact  he  was  known  to  have  made  several 
trips  into  Missouri,  sometimes  in  company  with  Stewart  —  and  he  also 
scoured  the  country  on  horseback  in  various  directions  from  Lawrence. 
Stewart  had  already  won  the  nickname  of  the  "Fighting  Preacher,"  and 
had  been  actively  engaged  with  old  John  Brown  and  Col.  James  Mont- 
gomery during  the  troubles  in  Linn  and  Bourbon  Counties,  and  had  taken 
part  in  bringing  slaves  out  of  Missouri.  He  was  beginning  to  be  suspected 
of  entertaining  loose  notions  with  regard  to  property  in  horses  as  well  as 
negroes,  but  his  burning  zeal  in  behalf  of  the  Free  State  cause  and  the 


118          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

was  a  preacher  and  very  active  in  securing  slaves  from  Missouri 
to  take  out  over  the  underground  railroad.  He  made  many  raids 
into  Missouri  and  always  brought  out  slaves  —  perhaps  other 
property.  The  State  of  Missouri  set  a  price  on  his  head,  as  did 
some  counties  and  individuals.  Quantrill  would  willingly  have 
betrayed  him  into  the  hands  of  the  Missourians  for  these  rewards. 
After  the  Morgan  Walker  affair  Stewart  said  Quantrill  had  been 
trying  all  summer  to  get  him  to  go  on  that  trip,  but  that  he 
would  not  go  with  Quantrill  as  he  did  not  trust  him  fully.5 

That  Quantrill  and  Stewart  were  close  friends  for  a  time 
there  is  no  doubt.  Quantrill  and  a  man  named  Sinclair  made  a 
raid  into  Salt  Creek  Valley,  in  Leavenworth  county,  and  stole 
more  than  eighty  head  of  cattle  from  pro-slavery  settlers  there. 
They  drove  the  cattle  to  Lawrence,  crossing  at  the  ferry,  and 
took  them  to  Captain  Stewart's  fort.  The  owners  of  the  cattle 
followed  them,  and,  securing  the  services  of  the  sheriff  of  Doug- 
las county,  recovered  all  but  two,  and  these  were  being  butchered 
at  Stewart's  before  the  officers  arrived.6 


freedom  of  the  colored  race  caused  his  irregularities  to  be  winked  at  to 
some  extent,  by  those  who  became  aware  of  them  and  his  excesses  to  be 
excused. 

Most  people  only  know  him  as  "The  Fighting  Preacher,"  the  friend 
of  John  Brown,  the  pronounced  Abolitionist,  and  the  man  ever  ready  to 
harbor  and  defend  fugitives  from  slavery. 

5  In  the  published  statement  of  S.  S.  Herd,  it  is  said : 

At  the  time  we  made  this  trip  to  Jackson  county,  Missouri,  with 
Quantrill,  there  was  much  excitement  among  the  people  over  the  depreda- 
tions committed  by  some  of  the  "abolition  leaders,"  and  a  very  bitter 
feeling  existed  toward  Captain  John  E.  Stewart  and  others,  and  I  have 
always  had  my  suspicions  that  it  was  during  this  trip,  and  after  he  left 
us  with  his  racing-horse,  that  he  conceived  the  idea  and  perhaps  laid  his 
plans  to  deliver  Captain  Stewart  over  to  the  authorities  of  Jackson  county, 
which  finally  resulted  in  the  episode  at  Walker's  house,  later  in  the  season. 

6  Letters  of  Samuel  Walker  to  W.  W.  Scott,  now  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author.     There  are  two  of  these  letters,  one  dated  January  28,  1883, 
and  one  dated  April  14,  1889.     Both  were  written  from  Lawrence,  Walker's 
home.    Walker  was  the  sheriff.    He  was  one  of  the  first  settlers  of  Law- 
rence.    He  was  a  very  conscientious  man  and   an   excellent   citizen,   but 
entertained  strong  prejudices.     There  are  contradictions  in  the  statements 
made  in  these  letters.     In  the  first  he  says  that  "Hart  and  Coppock"  stole 
the  cattle.     In  the  second,  he  says  they  were  stolen  by  Hart  and  Sinclair. 
Barclay  Coppoc  returned  to  Kansas  after  the  Harper's  Ferry  raid,  and  he 
lived  at  that  time  with  John  Dean  at  Lawrence.     But  it  was  Sinclair  who 
was  on  this  raid  into  Salt  Creek  Valley  with  Quantrill.     And  this  valley 


A  BORDER-RUFFIAN  AT  LAWRENCE  119 

While  Quantrill  would  flee  to  the  protecting  walls  of  Stew- 
art's fort  with  cattle  and  horses  stolen  from  pro-slavery  settlers 
in  Kansas,  he  did  not  hesitate  to  attack  Stewart  and  attempt  to 
storm  his  fort  if  he  saw  a  dollar  in  it  for  himself  for  doing  so. 
During  the  summer  of  1860  Captain  Stewart  received  and  con- 
cealed for  transportation  over  the  underground  railroad  some 
slaves  who  had  escaped  from  their  masters  in  Missouri.  Before 
the  slaves  could  be  forwarded  their  owners  appeared  in  pursuit 
of  them.  They  enlisted,  to  help  them  recover  the  slaves,  Jake 
Herd,  Jake  McGee,  Tom  McGee,  "Cuckold  Tom"  McGee,  Henry 
McLaughlin,  Esau  Sager,  and  Quantrill.  They  went  to  Stew- 
art's fort  and  demanded  the  slaves.  Quantrill  remained  in  the 
background  so  as  not  to  be  seen  by  Stewart.  Stewart  had  armed 

was  one  of  the  favorite  raiding  grounds  of  Quantrill;  he  stole  many  horses 
and  cattle  from  settlers  in  Atchison  and  Leavenworth  counties,  taking 
them  usually  from  pro-slavery  men,  driving  them  to  Stewart's  fort,  from 
which  point  they  were  disposed  of  in  the  country  south  of  the  Kansas  river. 
Of  the  identity  of  Sinclair  nothing  is  known  for  certain,  but  he  must  have 
been  Walt  Sinclair,  afterwards  a  Eed  Leg  and  murderer  under  Jennison. 
In  one  of  the  letters  Walker  says  he  recovered  more  than  eighty  head  of 
cattle;  in  the  other,  he  says  he  recovered  fifty  head.  The  following  quota- 
tion is  from  the  last  letter: 

Hart  &  Sinclair  came  across  the  Kansas  Eiver  at  Lawrence  from  Salt 
Creek  Valley  .  .  .  with  80  odd  head  of  cattle.  .  .  .  Hart  &  Sinclair  were 
alone,  they  took  the  cattle  to  Stuarts  fort.  I  found  the  cattle  at  Stuarts, 
and  found  Stuart,  Buchannon,  St.  Clair  &  Hart  playing  cards  &  some  men 
skinning  two  of  the  steers  in  the  yard,  the  cattle  were  taken  from  pro- 
slavery  men  that  lived  in  Kansas.  ...  I  was  Sheriff  of  Douglas  County 
&  lived  at  Lawrence,  the  owners  came  to  me  &  stated  that  they  had  lost 
the  cattle  &  tracked  them  to  the  river.  I  was  at  the  river  in  the  morning 
&  saw  the  cattle  cross  &  Hart  &  St.  Clair  was  driving  them.  I  knew 
at  once  they  were  taking  them  to  Stewarts  fort  5  miles  south  of  town. 
Hart  was  indicted  for  stealing  horses  in  the  U.  S.  Court  and  I  as  Deputy 
TL  8.  Marshal  tried  to  arrest  him. 

In  the  same  letter,  Walker  describes  his  first  meeting  with  Quan- 
trill, as  follows: 

My  first  acquaintance  with  Charley  Hart  was  in  Paola  in  this  State. 
I  met  him  with  Capt.  John  Stewart,  he  introduced  him  to  me  as  an  Ohio 
boy  &  I  being  from  that  state  I  had  a  long  talk  with  him.  I  was  Badly 
impressed  with  him  then  &  never  got  over  it.  he  did  not  deceive  me  one 
bit. 

In  the  first  letter,  Walker  says: 

I  will  be  plain  with  you.  I  had  thought  that  no  one  but  A  Democrat 
or  Rebel  would  try  to  Excuse  Charley  Hart,  as  I  saw  you  had  done  in  Sev- 
eral Articles  you  had  written,  he  was  a  Monster  of  the  worst  kind,  when 
any  one  tells  me  that  he  could  not  control  his  men  they  simply  say  they 


120          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

the  negroes,  and  he  refused  to  surrender  them.  A  battle  ensued, 
and  the  kidnappers  were  repulsed  after  securing  but  one  slave ; 
they  claimed  that  the  others  were  so  badly  wounded  as  to  be 
worthless,  but  as  Stewart  led  the  fight  and  was  not  injured,  it  is 
not  to  be  supposed  that  any  of  the  negroes  were  seriously  hurt. 
They  were  probably  all  able  to  go  out  on  the  next  train  over  the 
underground  railroad.  Quantrill  had  given  the  information  to 
his  ruffian  partners  of  the  presence  of  the  slaves  at  Stewart's 
fort,  and  he  was  planning  to  kidnap  them  and  sell  them  or  take 
them  to  Missouri  for  the  rewards  offered  for  them  when  the 


are  not  Posted.  I  could  tell  many  things  about  Hart  that  came  under  my 
observations,  at  that  time,  as  I  was  Sheriff  and  Deputy  Marshal,  that 
would  not  be  flattering  to  his  Mother. 

It  will  be  observed  in  the  above  that  when  Hart  was  operating  with 
the  Free-State  men  he  claimed  to  be  from  Ohio.  When  he  went  to  Missouri 
he  claimed  to  have  been  born  in  Maryland.  At  the  time  spoken  of  by 
Walker,  Quantrill  was  associated  with  the  ultra  wing  of  the  anti-slavery 
party  and  also  with  the  border-ruffijans.  With  him  it  was  any  person  or 
party  that  would  afford  him  an  opportunity  to  steal.  He  had  no  choice  — 
no  principle  —  no  moral  sense. 

In  the  clipping  from  the  Lawrence  Tribune  already  quoted  from  is 
the  following  account  of  the  cattle  stolen  by  Quantrill: 

Charley  Hart  is  supposed  to  have  paid  his  bills  at  Stone's  Hotel  in 
a  satisfactory  manner,  though  it  was  not  easy  to  see  how  he  could  get 
the  money  for  that  purpose.  Some  suspicion  was  at  length  entertained 
that  he  occasionally  indulged  in  horse  stealing,  and  some  time  in  the 
fall  of  1860  he  was  seen  with  another  young  man  driving  a  herd  of 
fine  steers  across  the  Kansas  river,  through  Lawrence  in  the  direction 
of  Stewart's  farm.  He  made  no  great  secret  of  the  fact  that  he  had 
taken  the  cattle  without  buying  them;  told  an  acquaintance  as  he  passed 
through  Lawrence  that  he  had  "jayhawked"  them  and  went  on  his  way 
in  peace.  Not  many  hours  afterwards  some  men  from  the  neighbor- 
hood of  Kickapoo,  in  Leavenworth  County,  came  following  on  the  trail  of 
the  cattle,  crossed  the  river  near  where  the  Lawrence  bridge  now  is, 
talked  with  Capt.  Sam  Walker  then  sheriff  of  Douglas  county,  learned 
where  the  cattle  were  likely  to  be  found,  took  Sheriff  Walker  with  them 
and  went  direct  to  Stewart's  farm.  They  found  the  cattle  in  a  large 
corral,  except  two  that  had  been  killed  and  were  then  hung  up  to  cool. 
Stewart  claimed  that  he  had  bought  the  two  steers  he  had  slaughtered 
from  two  men  who  had  passed  on  to  the  south,  and  who  would  return  in  a 
day  or  two  for  the  cattle  left  in  his  keeping.  But  there  sat  Quantrell 
alias  "Hart"  with  the  other  man  who  had  assisted  him  in  driving  the 
cattle  through  Lawrence  and  Walker  knew  that  Stewart's  story  was  a 
bare-faced  lie.  Quantrell  made  no  claim  to  the  cattle  and  said  not  a  word 
about  them.  Stewart  claimed  only  the  two  he  had  killed,  and  Walker 
delivered  the  others  over  to  their  owners  who  drove  them  quietly  home 
again  to  Kickapoo. 


A  BORDER-RUFFIAN  AT  LAWRENCE  121 

owners   appeared   in   pursuit.     This   was   what   he   called   his 
"detective  work." 

There  were  not  wanting  accusations  that  Quantrill  was  ply- 
ing his  vocation  of  murderer  even  in  the  town  of  Lawrence,  and 
that  murders  were  frequently  committed  by  him  there  little 
doubt  can  now  remain.  The  Lawrence  Tribune  has  the  follow- 
ing on  this  head: 

Sometime  after  this  incident  Quantrell  came  to  Sheriff 
Walker  and  told  him  that  two  men  had  come  up  from  Missouri 
on  the  hunt  for  some  runaway  slaves  and  had  put  up  at  Stone's 
Hotel.  That  two  well  known  citizens  of  Lawrence  had  taken 
them  in  charge  promising  to  guide  them  to  where  their  slaves 
were  secreted;  had  taken  them  down  to  the  banks  of  the  Kansas 
river  below  where  the  bridge  now  stands  and  had  there  KILLED 
THEM,  tied  their  bodies  together  with  cords  and  thrown  them 
into  the  river.  To  convince  Walker  of  the  truth  of  his  story, 
Quantrell  offered  to  show  him  where  the  horses  were  which  the 
two  Missourians  had  rode,  and  accordingly  he  took  Walker  across 
the  river  to  a  spot  near  where  Moak's  elevator  now  stands,  then 
covered  with  a  dense  growth  of  timber  and  showed  him  two 
horses  which  appeared  to  have  been  kept  there  for  several  days. 
Sheriff  Walker  took  the  horses  in  charge  and  advertised  them, 
but  they  were  never  claimed  or  called  for. 

There  was  not  the  slightest  reason  for  believing  that  the  two 
men  accused  of  murder  by  Quantrell  were  guilty  of  such  a  deed ; 
they  laughed  the  story  to  scorn;  but  nevertheless  the  murders 
were  undoubtedly  committed  by  some  persons,  for  within  ten 
or  twelve  days  from  the  time  that  Walker  took  possession  of  the 
horses,  the  bodies  of  two  men  were  found  floating  in  the  river 
near  Eudora,  tied  together  with  a  rope,  as  described  by  Quan- 
trell, and  were  taken  out  and  buried  at  some  place  not  far  from 
Eudora. 

There  can  be  no  shadow  of  doubt  that  Quantrell  himself 
either  alone  or  with  the  help  of  a  confederate,  murdered  those 
two  men  from  Missouri  in  cold  blood  for  the  purpose  of  obtaining 
the  money  they  had  on  their  persons,  and  perhaps  for  the  further 
object  of  showing  some  of  his  more  reckless  associates  that  he  was 
ready  to  go  all  lengths  against  ' '  Negro  Hunters. ' ' 

Very  possibly  there  was  another  reason  for  killing  these 
men.  It  was  then  suspected  and  is  now  well  known  that  Quan- 
trell was  playing  a  dangerous  double  game,  that  of  Aboli- 
tionist and  Slave  Liberator  in  Kansas,  and  that  of  an  extreme 
Pro-Slavery  man  in  Missouri,  professing  to  slave-holders  there 
that  he  was  acting  the  part  of  a  spy,  detective,  and  slave-catcher 


122          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

in  Kansas.  He  was  aiding  and  persuading  slaves  to  escape  from 
their  masters  into  Kansas,  and  then  betraying  them  by  disclosing 
their  place  of  refuge  to  those  same  masters  for  a  reward. 
"Whether  he  ever  actually  assisted  in  kidnapping  or  capturing 
escaped  slaves  and  taking  them  back  to  bondage  is  not  clear. 
Such  devil's  work  was  done  by  others  here  if  not  by  him,  and  it 
is  hardly  probable  that  he  would  allow  such  a  rich  mine  of  hell- 
ishness  and  infamy  to  be  worked  by  others,  while  he  took  no 
share  in  it.  Assuming  that  this  was  so,  we  may  readily  imagine 
that  these  two  men  fresh  from  Missouri  on  the  hunt  for  runaway 
slaves,  had  become  masters  of  the  dangerous  secret  of  his  two- 
faced  career,  and  that  Quantrill  thought  it  his  safest  course  to 
dispose  of  them,  remembering  the  trite  saying,  that  "dead  men 
tell  no  tales." 

Additional  evidence  that  Quantrill  was  never  actuated  by 
any  principle  or  convictions,  but  solely  by  his  innate  love  for 
lawlessness,  robbery,  and  plunder,  may  be  found  in  the  follow- 
ing incident.  Late  in  the  fall  of  1860  he  made  up  a  party  at 
Lawrence  for  the  purpose  of  raiding  into  Missouri  to  steal  horses, 
mules,  and  cattle.  This  raid  was  made  into  Cass  county.  Quan- 
trill had  carefully  gone  over  the  roads  there  and  had  marked  the 
farms  from  which  stock  was  to  be  taken.  The  party  secured  a 
large  amount  of  live  stock  and  started  to  return  to  Kansas. 
Quantrill  slipped  away  from  his  companions  and  alarmed  the 
people  where  the  stock  had  been  stolen,  gathered  a  number  of 
them  together,  and  led  them  against  his  own  band  of  thieves, 
who  were  overtaken  before  they  had  reached  the  State-line.  A 
battle  was  fought  in  which  the  robbers  resisted  fiercely  and  suc- 
ceeded in  escaping  with  most  of  their  spoil,  which  they  sold  along 
the  route  home.  Quantrill  contracted  with  the  Missourians  to 
find  and  identify  the  live  stock  at  so  much  per  head,  and  he 
secured  the  return  of  much  of  it  from  those  who  had  purchased 
it  from  the  robbers.  "When  he  returned  to  Lawrence  he  claimed 
that  he  had  become  bewildered  in  the  dark,  had  lost  his  way  to 
the  camp,  had  been  set  upon  by  enraged  owners  of  the  cattle  and 
horses  and  nearly  lost  his  life,  but  finally  escaped  by  making  a 
long  detour  to  the  south.  He  claimed  his  portion  of  the  money 
the  live  stock  had  been  sold  for,  and  it  was  paid  over  to  him. 
But  his  associates  were  not  satisfied  with  his  explanations,  and 


A  BORDER-RUFFIAN  AT  LAWRENCE  123 

they  would  not  follow  him  any  more.  After  that  he  operated 
almost  entirely  with  the  ultra  wing  of  the  anti-slavery  people. 

Such  duplicity  is  amazing.  A  character  capable  of  such 
baseness  is  incomprehensible.  Depravity  in  such  a  form  and 
carried  to  such  an  extent  bewilders,  becomes  a  mystery.7 

While  engaged  in  this  carnival  of  crime  Quantrill  wrote  his 
mother  a  letter  —  the  last  word  she  ever  heard  from  him.  He 
did  not  leave  even  a  word  for  her  in  the  mouth  of  the  priest  who 
shrived  him  at  death  for  his  gold.  The  letter  is  dated  at  Law- 

7  This  was  a  famous  raid,  and  memory  of  it  still  exists  among  the  old 
residents  along  the  border.  The  author  has  had  many  indefinite  accounts 
of  it,  most  of  the  details  having  been  forgotten.  Hon.  William  Higgins, 
now  of  Bartlesville,  Oklahoma,  furnished  information  that  was  valuable  in 
securing  an  adequate  account  of  it.  Mr.  Higgins  lived  at  that  time  at 
Paola,  Kansas.  This  is  believed  to  have  been  the  raid  referred  to  by 
S.  S.  Herd,  in  his  printed  statement,  in  the  Seventh  Volume,  Kansas  His- 
torical Collections,  as  follows: 

The  next,  and  in  fact  the  last,  time  I  saw  Quantrill  was  in  the 
spring  of  1861.  I  received  word  from  some  of  the  boys  to  be  out  at  John 
Stropp 's  on  a  certain  evening.  (Stropp  lived  about  a  mile  and  a  half 
east  of  town,  in  a  double  log-house,  surrounded  by  timber  and  brush.) 
At  the  appointed  time  I  went  there,  and  found  Quantrill  (who  did  not  dare 
to  be  seen  in  Lawrence  at  that  time),  Stropp,  Jay  Vince,  Jack  Elliott  (a 
brother-in-law  of  Frank  Baldwin),  and  Frank  Baldwin.  Quantrill  said  he 
wanted  to  raise  some  men  to  go  down  on  the  border,  a  little  way  over  the 
line  in  Missouri,  and  make  a  trip  down  through  that  country,  and  get  some 
stock.  He  said  there  was  fine  stock  in  that  section,  and  he  knew  the 
country  well.  The  other  boys  that  were  present  all  agreed  to  go,  and  they 
got  another  man  or  two  to  go  with  them,  but  I  do  not  now  remember 
what  their  names  were.  They  made  the  trip,  being  gone,  to  the  best  of 
my  recollection,  about  ten  days,  when  they  all  returned  to  Lawrence  with 
the  exception  of  Quantrill.  The  boys  said  they  had  a  good  time,  and  got 
lots  of  stock,  and  were  getting  out  nicely  till  they  got  near  the  Kansas 
line,  when  they  were  partially  surrounded  and  attacked  by  about  thirty 
of  the  Missourians,  and  had  a  brisk  fight,  but  managed  to  escape  that 
night  and  get  into  Kansas  with  most  of  their  plunder.  Much  of  the  stock 
they  traded  off  to  the  farmers  in  that  vicinity  and  along  the  road  from 
there  to  Lawrence.  This  was  undoubtedly  the  stock  that  Quantrill  after- 
wards engaged  to  locate  or  return  to  its  proper  owners  for  so  much  per 
head. 

The  raid  described  by  Herd  may  not  have  been  the  same  as  that 
described  in  the  text,  but  the  probability  is  that  they  are  identical.  Herd 
says  it  was  in  the  spring  of  1861,  which  would  be  impossible,  for  after 
the  Morgan  Walker  raid  Quantrill  did  not  operate  from  Lawrence,  and 
that  raid  was  made  in  December,  1860.  The  date  of  the  raid  described 
was  November,  1860,  but  just  what  time  in  the  month  it  was  made  can  not 
now  be  determined. 


124          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

rence,  June  23,  1860.  In  this  letter  he  again  promised  to  send 
her  some  money,  a  promise  he  did  not  keep.  It  is  known  that 
he  had  money  —  that  he  received  considerable  sums  as  the  results 
of  his  kidnappings  and  robberies.  And  he  deceived  her  by  say- 
ing he  had  sent  her  some  money  in  previous  letters  —  which  she 
never  received  and  which  he  never  sent.  Perhaps  the  world  has 
seen  few  men  who  would  deliberately  lie  to  their  mothers  to 
avoid  sending  a  few  dollars  to  aid  them  to  feed  and  clothe  their 
orphan  children.  It  may  be  that  Quantrill  stands  in  a  class 
alone  in  this  respect.  His  mother  was  a  widow  with  a  large 
family  of  almost  helpless  children  to  support.  She  did  not  for- 
get him,  but  sent  him  once  a  pair  of  boots  and  frequently  sent 
him  small  presents  the  first  year  he  was  in  Kansas  —  sent  them 
by  friends  who  came  from  Canal  Dover  to  the  Territory.  Yet, 
when  he  had  plenty  of  money  as  the  result  of  the  criminal  law- 
less life  he  was  living,  he  did  not  send  her  a  penny,  and  he  delib- 
erately broke  off  correspondence  with  her  rather  than  keep  his 
promise  made  in  this  last  letter  to  send  her  a  few  dollars.  For, 
had  he  written  again  he  would  have  been  compelled  to  send  her 
the  money  he  promised  or  to  have  invented  some  lying  excuse  for 
not  doing  so.  He  chose  deliberately  to  abandon  her,  and  she 
never  again  heard  from  him. 

Quantrill  probably  had  some  thought  of  returning  to  Ohio 
when  he  wrote  this  letter.  He  intended  to  run  when  it  became 
too  hot  for  him  in  Kansas,  and  he  had  calculated  that  September 
would  bring  that  condition  of  affairs.  But  he  remained  as  long 
as  he  could  —  until  December  —  then  ran  only  to  Missouri.  By 
that  time  he  had  grown  much  in  the  science  of  villainy,  and  he 
saw  immense  possibilities  in  that  line  along  the  border  during 
the  continuance  of  the  war  that  was  then  on  the  land. 

In  his  letter  he  claimed  to  have  been  surveying  lands  in  the 
Delaware  Indian  Reservation,  making  this  assertion  to  cause 
his  mother  to  believe  he  was  leading  an  industrious  and  honest 
life.8 


8  Letter  of  W.  C.  Quantrill  to  his  mother,  now  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author.  It  was  the  last  word  his  mother  ever  received  from  him,  the 
last  time  she  ever  heard  from  him  except  indirectly  and  by  chance  through 
newspaper  reports. 


A  BORDER-RUFFIAN  AT  LAWRENCE  125 

Lawrence,  Kansas 

June  23.  1860. 
My  Dear  Mother. 

I  seat  myself  again  to  write  to  you  without  having  received 
an  answer  to  my  last  two  letters,  and  from  the  delay  suppose 
you  have  not  received  them.  If  you  did  not  I  shall  be  quite  dis- 
appointed for  in  one  of  the[m]  I  enclosed  five  dollars  &  the  other 
ten  knowing  that  you  needed  it  and  if  I  knew  you  had  received 
them  I  would  in  this  one  send  more.  You  spoke  about  havi[n]g 
to  put  a  new  roof  on  the  house;  well  answer  this  immediately 
and  I  will  send  the  means  in  the  form  of  a  check  &  then  there 
can  be  no  loss.  I  would  like  to  come  with  it,  but  I  cannot  get 
away  yet  a  while.  I  am  expecting  to  get  some  money  from  a 
man  who  has  brought  suit  against  Government  &  has  had  judg- 
ment rendered  in  his  favor  but  without  that,  I  can  send  you  fifty 
dollars  as  soon  as  you  answer  this  letter.  I  received  a  letter 
from  Mary  dated  June  1st  Washn  only  two  days  ago  and  as 
she  said  she  would  probably  start  home  about  the  middle  of  the 
month  I  will  not  answer  it  at  present  until  I  hear  from  you 

It  has  been  very  dry  here  in  this  section  of  the  country 
causing  the  crops  to  be  backwarfd]  and  times  rather  dull.  Peo- 
ple a  [re]  generally  healthy.  I  had  a  slight  chill  and  fever  the 
other  day  but  none  since.  I  think  it  was  owing  to  having 
exposed  myself  too  much  for  a  couple  of  weeks.  I  have  been 
out  with  a  surveying  party  on  the  Delaware  Indian  lands  &  was 
obliged  to  camp  out  under  rather  unfavorable  circumstances. 
I  wish  you  a  merry  fourth  of  July.  I  intend  spending  mine 
near  where  I  kept  school  last  winter  if  nothing  happens  When 
you  write  tell  me  all  the  news  for  I  never  hear  any  thing  from 
there  only  what  you  write.  You  must  excuse  my  short  and 
badly  written  letters,  for  I  stop  at  taverns  &  never  can  feel  at 
home  enough  to  collect  my  thoughts  &  write  an  interesting  letter. 
Tell  me  something  about  Grandfather  for  I  have  a  desire  to 
hear  from  him  &  would  write  If  I  knew  where  to  direct  to.  If 
you  have  only  received  my  two  last  letters  is  all  that  I  wish  at 
present,  but  let  me  know  about  it  as  soon  as  possible  for  I  have 
money  in  my  pocket  now  for  you  &  will  send  it  as  soon  as  you 
write  &  probably  sooner  should  I  go  to  Leavenworth  city  for 
there  I  can  get  a  check 

Give  my  respects  to  my  friends  &  my  love  to  you  all,  hoping 
that  soon  I  will  see  you  all  again. 

Your  Son 

W.  C.  Quantrill 

P.  S.  I  will  here  say  that  I  will  be  home  any  how  as  soon  as  the 
1st  of  September  &  probably  sooner  by  that  time  I  will  be  done 
with  Kansas.  W.  C.  Q. 


^  /    /^Ot-r— •//*!7T>—x 


A  BORDER-RUFFIAN  AT  LAWRENCE  127 

Written  in  pencil  by  W.  W.  Scott,  is  the  following:  "Clos- 
ing paragraph  of  last  letter  Mrs.  Quantrill  ever  received. ' '  This 
endorsement  was  made  for  the  reason  that  the  last  paragraph 
and  the  postscript  are  written  on  a  fragment  of  a  sheet  of  paper 
about  one-third  the  size  of  the  sheet  on  which  the  letter  is  writ- 
ten. 

On  this  same  fragment  is  the  following  endorsement  writ- 
ten in  pencil  in  a  hand  unlike  any  other  writing  about  the  let- 
ter: "Belongs  to  letter  dated  Lawrence,  Kans.,  June  23,  1860, 
last  any  one  in  Ohio  ever  received  from  him." 

In  the  fall  of  1860  one  Heath  put  in  a  foundation  for  a 
stone  house  near  Kanwaka,  a  village  some  four  miles  southeast 
of  Lecompton.  Cold  weather  coming  on,  the  house  could  not 
be  completed  at  that  time,  so,  joists  were  put  in,  and  on  these 
joists  prairie  hay  was  stacked  to  keep  out  the  rain  and  snow  and 
to  keep  the  walls  dry.  Some  underground  railroad  enthusiast 
hid  a  runaway  negro  under  this  hay  and  boasted  that  Jake  Herd 
could  not  find  him.  Some  school  children  found  him  and  told 
Jake  of  his  whereabouts.  Herd  took  Quantrill  and  some  others 
and  went  to  the  house  and  got  the  negro.  In  taking  him  out  the 
hay  was  burned  and  the  people  were  attracted  to  the  place. 
The  walls  of  the  building  were  ruined  by  the  fire.  A  sort  of 
pitched  battle  took  place  between  the  friends  of  the  negro  and 
Herd  and  his  followers,  but  they  got  away  with  the  negro  and 
took  him  to  Missouri  and  sold  him.  This  was  very  late  in  the 
fall. 

For  this  crime  he  was  prosecuted  by  Hon.  Samuel  A.  Riggs, 
then  county  attorney  of  Douglas  county.  Quantrill  had  also 
broken  into  the  powder  storage  house  of  Ridenour  &  Baker  and 
stolen  a  large  amount  of  powder ;  he  was  indicted  for  it.  He  was 
indicted  for  kidnapping,  and  there  was  an  indictment  against 
him  in  the  Federal  Court  for  horse-stealing.? 

9  In  a  statement  published  in  the  Seventh  Volume,  Kansas  Historical 
Collections,  Judge  Riggs  says: 

During  the  years  1860  and  1861  I  was  county  attorney  of  Douglas 
county.  During  the  year  1860  Quantrill  was  living  and  operating  in  the 
vicinity  of  Lawrence  under  the  name  of  Charley  Hart.  By  that  name  I 
prosecuted  him  in  this  county,  during  the  summer  and  fall  of  1860,  for 
burglary  and  larceny,  in  breaking  open  and  stealing  from  a  powder-house 
of  Ridenour  &  Baker;  for  arson,  in  setting  fire  to  a  barn  in  Kanwaka 


128          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

The  following  incidents  will  show  that  Quantrill  had  trouble 
with  the  Delaware  Indians  and  robbed  them,  though  they  had 
given  him  a  home  —  had  sheltered  him  and  had  fed  him.  In  his 
published  statement,  Henry  S.  Clarke  says: 

One  little  incident  that  occurred  in  the  summer  of  1860,  that 
others  who  are  now  living  here  witnessed  besides  myself,  I  will 
relate. 

About  half  a  dozen  Delaware  Indians  came  riding  into  Law- 
rence one  day  very  much  excited,  and  soon  had  a  large  group  of 
people  around  them  inquiring  what  was  up,  etc.  White  Turkey, 
a  young  Delaware,  who  talked  pretty  good  English,  and  always 
sported  an  eagle's  feather  dangling  from  his  hat,  was  telling  the 
crowd  about  several  of  their  ponies  being  stolen,  and  said  they 
had  traced  them  to  the  Kansas  river  near  Lawrence,  and  that 
Charley  Hart  (as  Quantrill  called  himself  then)  was  one  of  the 
men  seen  with  the  ponies.  Quantrill,  who  was  in  the  rear  of  the 
crowd,  heard  the  remark,  and  stepped  forward  with  a  big  bluff, 
warning  White  Turkey  that  that  kind  of  talk  did  not  go,  and 
made  a  motion  toward  his  revolver.  White  Turkey  whipped  out 
his  gun  and  had  him  covered  in  less  than  a  second.  Quantrill 
had  his  pistol  out  of  the  holster,  but  dared  not  attempt  to  elevate 
it,  but  backed  out  of  the  crowd  with  his  pistol  pointing  toward 
the  ground,  as  White  Turkey  slowly  advanced  toward  him,  until 
he  (Quantrill)  saw  a  chance  to  give  his  adversary  the  slip,  which 
he  was  by  no  means  too  proud  or  reckless  to  do  at  the  first  oppor- 
tunity. 

The  following  is  from  the  published  statement  of  Holland 
Wheeler,  already  referred  to: 

At  one  time  an  Indian  woman  came  into  the  hotel  and  told 
Quantrill  she  wanted  seven  dollars  or  her  saddle.  He  got  the 
saddle  for  her.  ' '  Now, ' '  she  says, ' '  where  are  my  ponies  ? ' '  He 
said:  "I  don't  know  anything  about  your  ponies."  "Well," 
she  says,  "they  will  be  back  by  to-morrow,  or  you  will  have 
trouble." 

Quantrill  had  stolen  this  poor  Indian  woman's  saddle  and 
riding  ponies.  She  made  him  produce  the  saddle  and  return  it. 
Whether  she  recovered  her  ponies  is  not  known.  The  evidence 
is  conclusive  that  Quantrill  would  rob  anybody,  man  or  woman. 

township  this  county,  and  for  kidnapping.  These  charges  were  all  pending 
against  him  when  he  disappeared  from  this  county,  to  turn  up  here  again 
on  the  fateful  21st  of  August,  1863.  He  was  an  outlaw  when  he  took  to 
the  bush. 


A  BORDER-RUFFIAN  AT  LAWRENCE  129 

"When  Sheriff  Walker  attempted  to  arrest  him  for  his  many 
crimes,  Quantrill  fled  and  took  refuge  in  the  wagon-shop  of  John 
Dean,  closing  a  heavy  door  as  he  ran  in.     Before  Walker  could 
batter  down  the  door,  Dean  had  concealed 
the  criminal.     From  that  day  Quantrill 
did  not  show  himself  in  the  streets  of 
Lawrence.     He   forsook,   in   great   meas- 
ure, the  ruffians,  and  cast  his  lot  with 
Dean,  Stewart  and  the  other  abolitionists 
about  Lawrence. 

The  Lawrence  Tribune  says  of  the 
attempt  of  Sheriff  Walker  to  capture 
Quantrill  for  horse-stealing,  and  his 
escape : 

A  warrant  for  his  arrest  was  placed 
in  the  hands  of  Sheriff  Walker,  but  not 
Samuel  Walker  until    Quantrell    had    by    some    means 

learned  of  the  indictment,  and  declared 

that  he  would  never  be  arrested  on  the  warrant.  Sheriff  Walker, 
calling  George  Earl  to  assist  him,  soon  found  Quantrell  on  Massa- 
chusetts street,  but  as  soon  as  Quantrell  saw  him  approaching,  he 
started  down  the  street  upon  the  run,  and  bolted  into  the  wagon 
shop  of  John  Dean,  closing  and  barring  the  door  behind  him. 
Walker  was  not  long  in  smashing  the  door,  but  Quantrell  had 
disappeared,  and  Walker  never  set  eyes  upon  him  afterwards. 
Stone's  City  Hotel  was  carefully  searched  from  top  to  bottom, 
and  every  other  place  in  town  where  it  was  thought  likely  he 
could  be  found,  but  in  vain. 

Years  afterward  Walker  learned  from  John  Dean  that  Quan- 
trell spent  the  night  following  his  attempted  arrest  at  the  house 
of  a  man  named  Reed,  the  owner  of  a  wholesale  liquor  store  on 
the  east  side  of  Massachusetts  street,  near  where  the  Grange 
Store  now  is,  known  as  the  "Checkered  Front"  store.  Reed's 
dwelling  house  was  a  brick  building,  a  little  north  of  where  the 
Lawrence  House  now  stands,  on  Vermont  street.  That  house 
was  burned  at  the  time  of  the  "raid,"  and  was  never  rebuilt. 
In  that  house  Quantrell  passed  the  night,  with  the  Ex-Reverend 
John  E.  Stewart  for  a  bed  fellow. 

There  is  no  reason  to  suppose  that  Reed  had  any  suspicion 
whatever  of  the  true  character  of  his  guest,  but  Stewart  knew 
that  he  was  a  bad  man  on  general  principles. 

Quantrill's  career  at  Lawrence  to  this  period  can  be  sum- 

9 


130          QUANTEILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

marized  as  follows:  He  was  a  desperate  character,  steeped  in 
crime.  He  played  a  double  role  with  the  people  in  his  vicinity  — 
was  a  border-ruffian  and  an  ultra,  rabid  abolitionist.  He  was 
also  playing  a  double  role  between  his  ruffian  associates  and  the 
people  of  Missouri  whom  they  robbed.  And  he  was  playing  still 
another  double  role  —  between  Kansas  and  Missouri. 

Quantrill  was  making  progress  on  his  way  to  a  bloody  des- 
tiny. 


CHAPTER  VIII 

QUANTRILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART  —  A  JAYHAWKER  AT  LAWRENCE 

WHEN  Quantrill  fled  to  Dean's  wagon-shop  to  escape 
arrest  for  his  many  crimes,  he,  in  large  measure,  sev- 
ered his  relations  with  the  local  border-ruffians.  He 
had  played  out  the  game.  He  was  under  suspicion.  His  com- 
rades in  crime  had  not  come  quite  to  a  realization  of  his  treach- 
ery, for  in  that  event  he  would  have  been  led  into  the  brush  and 
promptly  shot.  Quantrill  was  cunning  and  knew  exactly  how 
far  he  could  carry  his  double-dealing  with  the  ruffians.  He  had 
been  under  suspicion  before,  but  was  always  able  to  satisfy  his 
ruffian  associates  that  he  hung  about  the  abolitionists  only  in 
the  capacity  of  detective  —  to  find  out  what  they  were  doing, 
that  their  work  might  be  undone.  As  he  had  given  his  gang 
information  often  that  enabled  them  to  kidnap  a  free  negro  or 
rescue  a  runaway  slave  from  the  conductors  of  the  underground 
railroad,  his  explanation  seemed  plausible  and  was  accepted. 
But  his  excuse  for  deserting  them  in  Missouri  on  the  last  raid 
was  not  well  received.  They  would  not  follow  him  again,  and 
he  knew  that  he  would  have  to  turn  to  the  abolitionists  for  pro- 
tection. Walker  had  made  ineffectual  attempts  to  arrest  Quan- 
trill all  summer  and  fall,  and  the  criminal  had  saved  himself 
by  flight  and  quick  dodging.  Dean  had  saved  him  more  than 
once,  and  he  fled  to  Stewart's  fort  upon  more  than  one  occa- 
sion. Long  before  the  last  raid  into  Missouri  Quantrill  was  an 
outlaw,  a  skulking  fugitive  from  justice,  and  he  realized  that  it 
would  be  impossible  for  him  to  remain  much  longer  at  Lawrence 
in  any  capacity.  He  lingered  only  to  consummate  the  plans  he 
had  been  developing  all  summer  for  his  master-stroke,  then  he 
would  cast  his  lot  with  the  border-ruffians  of  Missouri  and  make 
a  new  deal  and  prey  upon  the  people  of  Kansas  exclusively. 
These  were  his  plans,  and  he  hoped  they  would  materialize.  His 
intention  was  to  take  some  very  prominent  man  to  Missouri  and 


132          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

betray  him  to  death  in  order  that  he  might  bound  into  promi- 
nence and  become  a  hero.  But  he  saw  that  this  would  be  impos- 
sible when  he  fled  to  Dean's  wagon-shop.  He  gave  up  Captain 
Stewart  and  went  to  work  to  get  any  one  he  could  —  and  as 
many  as  possible. 

It  was  said  that  Quantrill  had  planned  to  assassinate  a  num- 
ber of  his  associates  at  Lawrence,  then  flee  to  Missouri.  Failing 
in  this,  he  planned  to  take  them  to  Missouri  on  a  predatory  foray 
and  there  have  them  killed  —  the  conception  which  finally  devel- 
oped into  the  Morgan  Walker  Raid.  There  is  some  documentary 
evidence  to  sustain  this.1 

Quantrill  was  well  known  to  Dean.  Indeed,  Dean  says 
Quantrill  brought  letters  of  introduction  to  him  from  people 
living  about  Stanton  and  Osawatomie,  so  the  acquaintance  must 
have  dated  from  the  arrival  of  Quantrill  at  Lawrence  in  the 
spring  of  I860.2 


1  In  addition  to  the  foregoing  statement,  the  Kansas  Historical  So- 
ciety has  among  its  manuscripts  seven  different  letters,  in  all  about  forty- 
eight  pages,  from  John  M.  Dean  to  Joseph  Savage,  dated  Waukon,  Alla- 
makee  county,  Iowa,  written  during  the  year  1879.     Under  date  of  June 
8,  1879,  in  a  four-page  letter  to  Savage,  is  the  following: 

About  that  time,  August,  1860,  Eidenour  &  Baker's  powder-house, 
that  stood  on  the  bank  of  the  river,  was  robbed  by  some  one  who  lifted 
one  corner  of  the  roof.  [Samuel  A.  Eiggs,  page  234,  7th  volume,  says  he 
prosecuted  Quantrill,  alias  Hart,  for  this.]  In  talking  the  thing  over, 
Quantrill  said  he  knew  where  that  powder  was  stored  under  a  haystack 
down  at  Jake  McGee's,  and  the  intention  was  to  use  it  when  the  collision 
came,  and  use  it  for  the  Southern  interest,  and  that  he  (Quantrill)  would 
be  only  too  glad  to  see  the  stack  burned  and  the  powder  destroyed,  and 
would  go  with  us  any  night  and  do  the  job.  Without  telling  him,  we  went 
down  there  one  night  and  inspected  every  stack,  by  taking  steel  ramrods  to 
muskets  and  probing  through  every  stack,  but  found  nothing.  The  next  day 
Quantrill  was  in  my  shop  talking  about  it,  and  I  asked  him  many  ques- 
.tions,  and  finally  told  him  he  was  mistaken,  for  I  had  been  there,  searched 
well,  and  found  nothing.  He  said  he  was  not  mistaken,  had  seen  the  powder 
in  its  place  of  deposit,  and  would  be  only  too  glad  to  take  me  and  the 
boys  there  and  prove  the  thing.  To  end  the  controversy,  I  agreed  to  go 
with  him  that  night,  and  eight  of  us  did  get  ready  but  did  not  go.  After 
Walker's  raid,  I  learned  the  fact  that,  if  we  had  gone,  few,  if  any,  of  us 
would  have  escaped,  for  there  was  a  heavy  ambushing  party  waiting  to 
receive  us,  of  which  Quantrill  was  one.  —  Kansas  Historical  Collections, 
Vol.  VIII,  p.  329. 

2  Dean  came  to  Kansas  from  Iowa.    Little  is  known  of  him.     He  had 
a  wagon-shop  in  Lawrence  and  was  an  earnest  anti-slavery  man  of  the  im- 
practicable and  visionary  type.     He   was  bombastic,  theoretical,   bigoted. 


A  JAYHAWKER  AT  LAWRENCE  133 

While  Quantrill  usually  boarded  at  the  hotel  kept  by  Nathan 
Stone  when  in  Lawrence,  he  lived  for  a  time  in  the  home  of 
Dean.  When  Dean  would  question  him  concerning  his  asso- 
ciating with  Jake  Herd  and  the  McGees,  Quantrill  would  declare 
that  he  was  doing  so  in  the  capacity  of  detective  —  that  he  was 
trying  to  discover  their  plans  that  he  might  thwart  them.  The 


self-important.  He  was  shallow,  and  he  believed  he  was  accomplishing 
great  things  at  Lawrence  in  1860.  He  contributed  nothing  to  the  cause 
of  freedom  in  Kansas,  but  he  left  the  state  and  returned  to  Iowa  honest- 
ly thinking  that  he  had  contrived  and  executed  much  of  the  work  of  saving 
Kansas.  Dean  was  a  braggart  and  a  boaster,  and  he  was  an  arrant  coward. 
A  number  of  his  labored,  heavy,  windy,  ridiculous  letters  are  in  the 
Collection  of  the  author.  In  one  of  them  he  asserts  that  Governor  Clai- 
borne  F.  Jackson,  of  Missouri,  had  offered  a  reward  of  $5,000  in  gold 
for  his  head  —  something  wholly  improbable.  But  where  he  had  knowledge 
of  a  matter  his  statements  bear  the  stamp  of  truth,  and  I  regard  his 
letters  as  good  authority,  though  they  are  embellished  with  fanaticism 
and  egotism.  There  is,  also,  in  the  Collection  of  the  author  a  paper  en- 
titled, "John  Dean's  Statement  to  W.  W.  Scott  of  Canal  Dover  in  Reply 
to  Interrogatories,"  typewritten  from  an  original  now  in  the  library  of 
the  Kansas  Historical  Society.  In  this  paper  Dean  says: 

I  first  met  William  C.  Quantrill  in  Lawrence  in  the  early  spring 
of  1860.  He  was  introduced  to  me  by  one  Ingersoll,  a  lawyer.  My  inter- 
view with  him  in  Ingersoll 's  office  was  of  about  two  hour's  duration.  He 
showed  me  many  recommends,  etc. ;  said  he  had  been  teaching  school  all 
the  past  winter  in  Lykins  county;  said  he  had  often  heard  of  me  as  a 
strong  anti-slavery  man  that  was  running  off  slaves  from  Missouri,  and 
wanted  to  unite  himself  with  me  in  that  business  and  do  all  he  could  to 
help  along  the  cause. 

My  first  impression  of  Quantrill  under  those  conditions  was  not 
favorable,  and  I  said  so  to  him  at  the  time.  Still  he  insisted  upon  proving 
himself  "by  work"  true  to  the  anti-slavery  cause. 

He  made  Lawrence,  Kansas,  his  "headquarters"  from  early  spring  of 
1860  until  November  of  same  year,  having  no  particular  legitimate  busi- 
ness and  doing  nothing  but  mixing  and  meddling  with  the  slavery  question 
upon  both  sides.  When  asked  why  he  associated  so  much  with  the  other 
side,  his  reply  was,  to  learn  their  secrets.  He  was  continually  trying  to 
complete  some  "plot"  that  would  "work  all  right." 

While  in  Lawrence  he  was  a  very  frequent  visitor  to  my  workshop, 
and  was  persistent  in  his  efforts  to  gain  my  confidence  and  knowledge  of 
my  plans  and  doings. 

In  a  letter  to  W.  W.  Scott,  dated  Waukon,  Allamakee  county,  Iowa, 
Jan.  26,  1879,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  Dean  says: 

I  met  Quantrell  as  a  now  known  spie  and  assassin,  working  in  connec- 
tion with  many  others  for  reward  of  Earth.  He  was  a  sensitive,  falsely 
polerized,  or  polerized  to  Evil  Your  description  of  him  was  fair  but  not 
positively  correct  or  sharply  drawn.  He  was  some  taller  not  less  than 
5-10  we  have  stood  back  to  back  &  compared.  I  am  5-10%  strong  and  he 


134          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

role  of  detective  was  a  favorite  one  with  Quantrill.  He  made  it 
hide  his  participation  in  many  crimes. 

There  are  of  record  few  incidents  in  which  Dean  and  Quan- 
trill were  associated.  Dean  says  (in  a  letter)  that  he  knew  of 
but  one  raid  which  Quantrill  made  into  Missouri  —  the  Morgan 
Walker  Raid.  This  shows  how  little  Dean  really  knew  of  Quan- 
trill's  actions.  But  Dean  and  Quantrill  acted  together  in  the 
Allen  Pinks  affair. 

Allen  Pinks  was  a  free  negro  who  came  to  Missouri  from 
Pittsburg,  Pa.  He  was  a  mulatto  of  less  than  one-half  negro 
blood,  his  grandmother  having  been,  as  he  claimed,  a  German 
woman.  He  was  a  barber  and  a  cook  on  a  steamboat  in  1859. 
He  was  discharged  at  St.  Joseph,  and,  in  company  with  some 

less  than  %  inch  shorter.  I  never  knew  of  his  having  a  picture  taken  his 
eyes  were  uncommonly  large  and  full,  he  was  quite  talkative  at  times. 
Very  pleasant  as  a  studied  rule,  laughing  &  joking,  not  a  loud  boisterous 
laugh,  but  a  rolling,  rippling,  quiet  laugh.  He  was  acting  the  spie  in  his 
connection  with  me  and  of  course  much  of  his  seeming  character  was 
"put  on." 

There  was  a  reward  of  $5000.  in  gold  on  my  life  at  that  time,  of- 
fered by  Gov  Clabe  Jackson  of  Mo.  for  I  was  doing  all  I  could  then  on 
the  Under  ground  E  E.  or  freeing  slaves,  he  bought  his  introduction  to 
me  through  one  professed  rabid  Anti  slavery  Lawyer  by  the  name  of  Inger- 
soll  at  the  time  showing  me  letters  &  recommends  from  men  then  residing 
in  Lykins  Co.  I  will  say  to  you  that  he  never  had  my  full  confidence. 
I  was  always  on  my  guard  and  many  of  his  plots  misscarried  in  consequence. 
What  time  he  was  spending  around  Lawrence  was  in  one  way  active  he 
was  very  temperate  as  I  now  remember,  but  did  at  last,  or  about  1861  begin 
to  have  his  little  times  of  a  drink  or  two,  did  not  use  tobacco  in  any  way 
as  I  remember,  but  was  given  to  the  worship  of  women  somewhat,  his 
time  was  spent  much  with  those  lawless  and  reckless  neer  do  wells  that 
abound  in  such  times  and  places.  When  asked  why  he  did  associate  with 
such  characters,  he  claimed  to  be  spieing  their  plans,  with  the  intention 
of  doing  good  and  was  often  telling  of  some  scheme  of  theirs  to  kidnap 
colored  people  to  sell  again,  and  in  the  carrying  out  of  one  of  these  plots 
he  got  himself  and  his  pro-slavery  friends  indicted  by  the  Grand  jury  of 
Lawrence  and  I  escaped  the  snair  that  was  laid  in  the  plot. 

In  a  letter  to  Samuel  Walker,  dated  Waukon,  Allamakee  county,  Iowa, 
July  3,  1879,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  Dean  says  of  Quantrill: 

Quantrells  occupation  while  living  at  and  near  Lawrence,  was  that 
of  a  "spie"  or  detective  in  the  interests  of  Slavery,  and  it  may  possibly 
be  of  the  then  Gov't.  One  of  the  Coppic  boys  that  was  at  "Harpers 
Ferry"  with  old  John  Brown,  was  in  "Kansas",  and  some  with  me  about 
that  time,  and  the  U.  S.  Gov't  was  looking  for  him.  After  the  mask  had 
been  removed  and  the  light  of  truth  let  in  to  those  heretofore  uncertain 
matters,  there  could  be  no  other  conclusion  than  that  Quantrell  was  acting 
the  part  of  detective  or  spie  in  the  pay  or  interests  of  the  South,  and  put 
his  time  in  in  the  best  way  to  "make",  not  always  governed  in  his  actions 
by  the  plumb  line  of  "right". 


A  JAYHAWKER  AT  LAWRENCE  135 

white  man,  he  set  out  to  walk  to  Leavenworth,  but  was  appre- 
hended at  the  Rialto  Ferry  and  carried  to  Platte  City,  Mo., 
and  cast  into  jail.  He  finally  made  his  escape  and  went  to 
Lawrence.3 


3  Dr.  John  Doy  found  Allen  Pinks  in  jail  at  Platte  City  and  left  this 
of  record  concerning  him,  in  Chapter  XII  of  his  little  book: 

He  was  quite  a  light  colored  mulatto,  of  about  twenty  years  of  age, 
born  at  Pittsburg,  in  Pennsylvania;  his  grandmother  being  a  German  wo- 
man, as  he  informed  me.  He  had  been  cook  and  head  waiter  on  board  of 
steamboats  on  the  Mississippi  and  Missouri  Rivers,  and  had  last  been  paid 
off  at  St.  Joseph,  Missouri.  From  there  he  started  for  Leavenworth,  walk- 
ing down  the  Missouri  bank  of  the  river  with  a  white  man,  who  had  been 
on  board  the  steamboat  with  him.  At  the  Eialto  Ferry,  he  was  stopped 
by  the  Ferryman  on  suspicion  of  being  a  fugitive  slave,  and  lodged  in 
Weston  calaboose  till  he  was  transferred  to  Platte  City  jail. 

Thinking  his  free  papers  were  wearing  out,  he  had  left  them  with  a 
free  colored  wagon-builder  at  Independence,  Missouri.  As  it  was  for  the 
interest  of  those  concerned  in  detaining  him,  that  he  should  not  prove  him- 
self free,  he  could  get  no  one  to  send  to  Independence,  though  only  thirty 
miles  distant,  and  ascertain  whether  his  assertions  were  true  or  false.  .  .  . 

To  finish  Pinks'  story,  I  will  state  that,  after  my  rescue  from  the 
hands  of  the  Missourians,  expecting  an  attempt  to  recapture  me,  I  was 
fortified  at  Mr.  Stearns'  brick  block,  in  the  centre  of  Lawrence,  for  nearly 
a  month. 

One  morning  about  five  o'clock,  I  was  called  by  Mr.  Stearns,  who  in- 
formed me  that  a  rough-looking  man,  who  said  he  was  from  Platte  City,  was 
asking  for  Dr.  Doy  at  the  front  door.  I  looked  out  from  my  upper  window 
and  whom  should  I  see  but  Allen  Pinks.  He  was  nearly  naked,  having 
nothing  on  but  shirt  and  trowsers,  and  those  almost  torn  to  pieces.  When 
let  in,  he  accounted  for  his  dilapidated  appearance,  by  saying  that  he  had 
traveled  a  bee  line  from  Platte  City,  and  having  been  in  somewhat  of  a 
hurry,  had  not  paid  sufficient  respect  to  the  thorns  and  briers  he  met  with. 
He  had  swum  the  Missouri  River  above  Leavenworth  and  come  into 
Lawrence  through  the  Delaware  Reserve  —  begged  a  passage  over  Kaw 
River,  and  finally  arrived  in  safety  at  the  city  of  refuge. 

We  bound  up  and  healed  his  cut  and  swollen  legs  and  feet,  and  sent 
to  Pittsburg,  Penn.,  for  his  free  papers.  They  reached  us  14th  September, 
1859,  and  were  supported  by  the  affidavits  of  Mr.  Wm.  McArthur  and  Dr. 
F.  G.  Gallaher,  of  Pittsburg,  who  had  known  Pinks  from  birth.  When  they 
came,  I  said  to  him,  "Pinks,  I've  got  something  for  you." 

'What  is  it,  doctor!" 
.  'Your  free  papers." 
'Oh!" 

'You  don't  seem  to  care  much:  aren't  you  gladt" 
'Why  should  I  be?    What  good  will  they  do  me?    Haven't  we  seen 
plenty  of  free  papers  torn  up  and  burnt  in  Platte  City  jail?" 

And  Pinks  was  right.  A  colored  man's  free  papers  are  not  worth  one 
red  cent  to  him  in  the  border  towns  of  Missouri,  even  if  he  carries  them 
with  him  and  has  them  registered  in  every  town  on  the  river  in  which  he 
works.  .  .  .  Free-born  men  are  kidnapped  and  sold  into  hopeless  slavery. 
^  Allen  Pinks  is  now  employed  in  the  Johnson  House  at  Lawrence,  is 
considered  one  of  the  best  and  steadiest  hands  there,  but  says  he  had  had 
sufficient  experience  of  the  blessings  of  freedom  for  colored  men  in  thia 


136          QUANTKILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

There  was  a  kidnapper  living  in  Lawrence  by  the  name  of 
Bob  Wilson.  Wilson  was  operating  with  Dean,  Stewart,  and 
others  having  in  charge  the  underground  railroad,  though  like 
Quantrill,  he  had  the  full  confidence  of  Jake  Herd  and  the 
McGees  and  often  joined  them  in  kidnapping  forays.  It  is  a 
strange  thing  that  most  of  the  ruffians  and  kidnappers  living  in 
Kansas  would  join  the  underground  railroad  agents  in  raids  into 
Missouri  to  get  slaves  for  freedom,  but  often  they  would  kidnap 
these  same  slaves  after  they  had  assisted  in  bringing  them  into 
Kansas,  then  return  them  to  their  owners  for  the  reward  or  sell 
them  again  into  slavery. 

Allen  Pinks  came  finally  to  turn  against  his  own  people. 
This  was  probably  at  the  instance  of  Wilson  and  Quantrill  who 
used  him  in  their  business  of  kidnapping.  Pinks  began  to  act 
as  a  decoy  to  run  free  negroes  and  fugitive  slaves  into  the 
clutches  of  Quantrill,  Jake  Herd,  and  Wilson.  The  real  aboli- 
tionists, such  as  Stewart  and  Dean,  when  they  were  satisfied 
that  Pinks  had  turned  traitor  to  them  and  to  the  negro  people, 
decided  that  he  must  be  put  to  death.  Quantrill  and  Wilson 
were  assigned  to  the  work  of  killing  him.  These  worthies  saw 
rank  waste  in  murdering  him,  when  the  same  end  might  be 
accomplished  by  kidnapping  him  and  selling  him  into  slavery. 
They  decided  to  kidnap  Pinks  and  carry  him  to  some  slave 
market.  Pinks  was  then  running  a  barber-shop  in  Lawrence. 
Wilson  lived  about  where  the  present  Santa  Fe  passenger  sta- 
tion is  now  located.  That  part  of  Lawrence  was  then  covered 
with  a  thick  growth  of  hazel  brush  and  tangled  vines,  through 
which  were  cut  narrow  lanes.  Wilson  lived  in  a  small  one-story 
frame  house  of  two  rooms.  He  went  to  Pinks  and  engaged  him 
to  go  to  his  house  to  dress  his  wife's  hair,  pretending  that  she 
was  sick,  or  had  been  sick,  and  was  unable  to  attend  to  her  hair. 

Union,  especially  in  the  state  of  Missouri.  That  state  did  indeed,  keep  him 
for  three  months  without  any  charge  for  rent  or  board,  but  as,  if  he  had 
stayed  one  month  more,  he  would  have  been  sold  at  the  auction  block  like  a 
beast,  he  prefers  not  to  try  her  hospitality  again. 

In  the  statement  of  Holland  Wheeler,  referred  to  before,  it  is  stated 
that  Allen  Pinks  was  shot  by  an  enraged  mob  of  his  own  people  at  Leaven- 
worth.  He  turned  kidnapper  himself,  and  caused  many  free  negroes  to  be 
kidnapped  and  sold  into  slavery. 


A  JAYHAWKER  AT  LAWRENCE  137 

It  took  some  persuasion  to  get  Pinks  to  go,  for  he  was  guilty  and 
scary.  When  Pinks  went  into  the  house,  a  hack  or  closed  car- 
riage drove  up,  two  kidnappers  alighted  from  it,  and  they  went 
one  of  them  to  each  of  the  doors  of  the  room  where  Pinks  was 
beginning  work  on  Mrs.  Wilson 's  hair.  Pinks  knew  in  a  moment 
what  was  up,  for  he  had  devised  traps  for  negroes  himself.  He 
ran  into  the  next  room,  pursued  by  Wilson,  and  escaped  from 
the  house  by  a  small  window  and  got  into  the  thickets  of  hazel 
brush.  He  was  searched  for  but  not  found. 

Dean  was  much  chagrined  when  he  found  that  Pinks  was 
not  murdered,  as  he  supposed  he  would  be  by  Quantrill  and 
Wilson,  and  he  may  have  entertained  suspicions  of  their  good 
faith  in  the  matter.  In  any  event,  he  decided  to  take  no  further 
chances ;  he  determined  to  kill  Pinks  himself.  It  is  claimed  that 
Dean  had  been  associated  in  some  matters  with  Pinks  for  which 
he  was  liable  to  be  prosecuted  and  wished  him  put  out  of  the  way 
at  once,  which  was  an  additional  motive  for  Dean's  action. 
There  was  a  public  well  hi  Lawrence,  and  one  day  when  Pinks 
was  drinking  from  the  bucket  on  the  curb  of  this  well,  Dean, 
from  concealment,  shot  him  in  the  back  of  the  head  with  a  small 
rifle.  The  thickness  of  the  negro's  skull  saved  his  life.  The 
rifle-ball  glanced  on  the  skull  and  ran  around  just  under  the 
skin  and  lodged  in  his  forehead.  Seeing  that  he  had  failed  to 
kill  Pinks,  in  the  excitement  Dean  escaped  and  fled  to  Stewart's 
fort  and  acquainted  Stewart  with  the  facts  in  the  case,  and  it 
was  given  out  there  that  Dean  had  been  in  the  fort  nearly  all 
day  and  was  not  in  Lawrence  when  Pinks  was  shot. 

Concerning  the  opinion  held  by  some  that  Dean  and  Quan- 
trill tried  to  kill  Pinks  to  prevent  him  from  appearing  against 
them  as  witness  in  kidnapping  cases,  it  is  enough  to  say  that  Quan- 
trill did  not  wish  to  kill  him,  but  to  kidnap  him  and  sell  him, 
while  Dean  would  not  have  taken  any  part  in  a  kidnapping.  In 
his  fanaticism  for  abolitionism  he  could  have  killed  Pinks  for 
being  a  traitor  to  the  negro  people  and  the  holy  cause,  but  there 
is  no  evidence  whatever  that  Dean  was  a  kidnapper.  He  was  a 
true  abolitionist  and  an  enthusiastic  agent  of  the  underground 
railroad. 

Dean  was  afterward,  at  his  own  solicitation,  arrested  and 


138          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

thrown  into  jail  at  Lawrence  for  the  attempt  to  murder  Pinks. 
There  were  many  other  incidents  in  the  life  of  Quantrill  at 
Lawrence  as  Charley  Hart  of  the  same  nature  as  those  set  out 
herein.  But  the  details  are  very  difficult  to  secure  and  verify. 
Enough  has  been  shown  to  reveal  his  true  character.  The  climax 
of  his  criminal  career  in  Kansas  was  reached  in  December,  1860, 
in  the  Morgan  "Walker  raid/ 

4  Among  the  newspaper  clippings  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  re- 
lating to  Quantrill  and  his  career,  is  one  from  the  Kansas  City  Journal, 
written  by  the  Lawrence  correspondent  of  that  paper.  Unfortunately,  the 
date  of  the  publication  of  this  article  is  lost.  It,  however,  gives  the  facts 
in  the  matter  of  the  residence  of  Quantrill  at  Lawrence  and  his  relations 
to  the  people  there  during  the  time,  and  it  is  given  here: 

Quantrell  first  came  to  Lawrence  in  1858  and  remained  until  1861, 
and  from  the  time  he  came  till  he  left  he  boarded  at  what  was  then  the 
Whitney  House,  kept  by  Mr.  Stone,  now  known  as  the  Derfee  House.  Mr. 
Stone,  the  proprietor,  and  Quantrell  became  fast  friends  and  were  together 
a  good  deal.  During  his  stay  here  he  was  treated  with  kindness  by  the 
citizens,  who  never  at  any  time  offered  him  any  violence,  although  it 
was  a  notorious  fact  that,  together  with  two  or  three  others,  he  was  in 
the  habit  of  going  to  some  slave-holding  state  to  steal  slaves,  which  were 
brought  to  this  county  and  kept  at  a  rendezvous  at  a  place  near  where 
the  poor  farm  is  now  located.  When  the  owners  of  the  stolen  slaves  would 
offer  rewards  for  their  return,  Quantrell  and  his  associates  would  take  them 
back  and  secure  the  rewards.  ...  It  was  not  till  January  of  1861  that 
he  took  his  departure.  In  that  month  the  grand  jury  had  been  having  a 
session  at  Lecompton,  and  among  other  indictments  had  found  a  true  bill 
against  Quantrell  for  stealing  horses  from  the  Kickapoo  Indians.  Stone, 
his  friend,  of  the  Whitney  House,  was  a  member  of  the  grand  jury  which 
found  the  bill  against  him.  Col.  Walker  was  United  States  Marshal  at 
the  time,  and  the  warrants  for  the  arrest  of  Quantrell  were  placed  in  his 
hands.  Old  man  Stone  told  Quantrell  that  warrants  were  out  for  his 
arrest,  and  the  latter  prepared  himself  to  make  resistance.  He  went  into 
Duncan's  hardware  store,  where  he  procured  a  couple  of  pistols  and  loaded 
them,  in  anticipation  of  an  attempt  to  arrest  him.  He  appeared  to  be 
greatly  excited,  and  stepping  out  to  the  edge  of  the  sidewalk,  with  both 
pistols  drawn,  he  swore  several  good  round  oaths  that  he  would  not  be 
taken.  Col.  Walker  at  that  time  was  not  a  man  to  be  easily  intimidated, 
so,  in  company  with  a  little  man  named  Geo.  Earle,  he  approached  Quan- 
trell to  serve  his  warrants.  The  latter,  not  appearing  to  relish  a  fight  as 
much  as  one  would  have  supposed  from  his  violence,  turned  and  incontinent- 
ly fled,  without  firing  a  shot.  Walker  and  Earle  followed  close  after,  firing 
several  shots,  but  missing  him,  till  at  last  he  ran  into  a  wagon  shop  kept 
by  John  Deane,  on  what  is  now  a  vacant  lot  next  to  Apitz's  harness  shop. 
Deane  was  also  a  friend  of  his,  and  therefore  shut  the  door  and  locked  it 
in  the  marshal's  face.  It  was  broken  down,  however,  but  not  before 
Quantrell  had  had  time  to  escape  from  the  back  door.  Search  was  diligently 
made  at  the  Whitney  House,  but  to  no  purpose,  and  it  was  afterwards 
learned  that  he  had  been  secreted  in  a  brick  house  not  far  from  there, 
where  he  also  had  friends.  The  remaining  facts  of  his  departure  were 
learned  from  a  letter  written  by  Deane  to  Col.  Walker  after  several  years 


A  JAYHAWKER  AT  LAWRENCE  139 

had  passed.  The  next  night  after  the  circumstances  related  above  had 
transpired,  old  Stone  furnished  a  wagon,  and  Deane  and  four  other  young 
men  went  along  with  Quantrell  to  pilot  and  protect  him  through  the  state 
and  over  the  line  into  Missouri.  The  next  evening  they  camped  in  the 
woods  near  Independence,  worn  and  hungry,  with  their  long  day's  ride. 
Here  it  was  decided  that  Quantrell  should  go  to  the  house  of  Judge  Walker, 
which  was  in  the  neighborhood,  and  steal  some  eggs  for  supper.  Instead 
of  doing  this  he  went  to  Judge  Walker  and  others,  relating  the  pretended 
robberies  which  these  men  had  committed,  and  offering  to  betray  their 
hiding  place.  In  this  act  the  devil  in  his  nature  cropped  out  with  greater 
distinctness  than  ever  before.  With  the  full  knowledge  of  the  hardships 
which  these  young  men  had  undergone  with  the  sole  purpose  of  befriending 
him,  he  led  a  posse  of  men  upon  them,  and  with  his  own  hands  blew  out 
the  brains  of  two  who  had  never  done  him  aught  but  kindness.  Two  others 
were  killed  by  the  posse,  but  Deane,  though  shot  in  the  heel,  managed  to 
escape,  though  not  till  he  had  been  an  eye  witness  of  the  villainous  murder 
by  Quantrell  of  his  two  friends.  This  is  the  true  story  of  his  departure 
from  Lawrence.  Deane  afterwards  returned  to  Lawrence,  where  he  was 
immediately  arrested  by  Col.  Walker  for  assisting  Quantrell  to  escape,  and 
was  confined  in  the  jail  here  until  the  war  broke  out  in  earnest,  when  he 
was,  together  with  the  other  inmates  of  the  jail,  enlisted  in  Col.  Walker's 
company. 

Quantrell  was  regarded  by  all  who  knew  him  while  in  Lawrence  as  a 
consummate  coward  and  perfectly  unprincipled.  He  never  looked  a  man 
square  in  the  eye,  nearly  always  going  with  his  eyes  bent  toward  the  ground, 
and  always  lowering  his  head  when  he  saw  any  one  look  him  in  the  face. 
The  statement  that  he  raided  Lawrence  because  his  brother  was  killed 
here,  or  that  he  was  mistreated  by  the  citizens,  bears  not  a  word  of  truth. 
No  brother  of  his  ever  lived  here  or  in  the  state.  On  the  morning  he  ar- 
rived on  his  errand  of  death  one  of  his  first  inquiries  was:  "Where  does 
Col.  Sam  Walker  live?"  His  motive  for  his  raid  through  Kansas  was  simply 
plunder,  with  perhaps  some  personal  spite. 

The  details  of  the  trip  to  Morgan  Walker's  are  not  properly  set  out 
in  this  article.  Old  man  Stone  did  furnish  Deane  with  a  wagon  to  drive 
to  the  house  of  Walker  in  Jackson  county,  but  William  Partridge  had  taken 
his  wagon  and  carried  the  men  of  the  party  to  Osawatomie,  from  which 
point  it  was  intended  to  go  into  the  Cherokee  Nation  and  bring  out  some 
slaves  to  be  taken  to  Canada  over  the  underground  railroad.  At  Osawat- 
omie the  Cherokee  trip  was  abandoned,  largely  through  the  influence  of 
Captain  Ely  Snyder,  and  then  the  trip  to  Jackson  county  to  rob  Walker  was 
planned  by  Quantrill.  Some  of  the  party  would  not  go  on  the  Walker 
trip,  and  it  was  necessary  to  rearrange  all  the  plans  of  the  expedition. 
As  Partridge  had  gone  away  with  his  wagon  and  none  could  be  had  at 
Osawatomie,  Captain  Snyder  refusing  to  furnish  his,  Deane  returned  to 
Lawrence  and  secured  Stone's  wagon  and  drove  it  to  the  Walker  farm  to 
meet  and  aid  Quantrill  and  the  others  to  get  away  with  the  slaves.  The 
whole  story  will  be  found  in  the  following  chapters. 


CHAPTER  IX 


QUANTRILL    AS    CHARLEY    HART  —  THE    TRAITOR  — 
THE   MORGAN   WALKER  RAID 

IT  IS  necessary  to  introduce  the  characters  of  this  fatal  expe- 
dition in  detail.     They  were  principally  members  of  a  settle- 
ment of  Quakers  from  Springdale,  Iowa,  at  Pardee,  in  Atchi- 
son county,  Kansas.1 

Charles  Ball  was  born  at  Salem,  Ohio,  in  1837.  He  moved 
with  his  parents  to  Springdale,  Iowa,  in  1852.  The  family  was 
poor  and  suffered  the  hardships  and  privations  common  to  a  new 
country.  Ball  attended  the  common 
schools,  and  for  a  time  he  was  at  Penn 
College,  at  Oskaloosa,  Iowa.  There,  in 
addition  to  his  other  work,  he  studied 
drawing,  in  which  he  made  considerable 
progress.  He  moved  with  his  parents  to 
Kansas  in  1857.  His  sister  says  he  was 
the  favorite  of  the  family,  affectionate 
and  faithful.  His  parents  were  Quakers, 
and  he  was  a  birthright  member  of  the 
Quaker  church.  At  Pardee,  under  the 
powerful  ministry  of  Rev.  Pardee  Butler, 
he  united  with  the  Christian  church.  He 
was  a  first  cousin  to  the  Coppoc  brothers 
who  went  to  Harper's  Ferry  with  John  Brown.  Ball  was  an 
associate  of  John  Dean  and  made  raids  into  Missouri  to  liberate 


Charles  Ball 


i  Pardee  is  situated  on  the  southwest  quarter  of  Section  34,  Township 
6,  Eange  19,  Atchison  county.  It  was  named  for  Pardee  Butler,  the 
famous  Free-State  Christian  minister  who  was  mobbed  and  set  adrift  on  the 
Missouri  at  Atchison  by  the  border-ruffians.  He  lived  at  Pardee.  For 
an  account  of  him  and  the  prominent  part  he  bore  in  the  territorial  days, 
see  Personal  Recollections  of  Pardee  Sutler,  Cincinnati,  1889. 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID 


141 


slaves  for  transportation  over  the  underground  railroad.     It  was 
through  Dean  that  he  became  acquainted  with  Quantrill.2 

Chalkley  T.  Lipsey  was  the  son  of  John  and  Ann  Lipsey. 
He  was  born  at  Mt.  Pleasant,  Jefferson  county,  Ohio,  in  1838. 
His  parents  were  Quakers,  and  he  had  a  birthright  membership 
in  the  Quaker  church.  In  1844  his  parents  moved  to  Columbia 
county,  Ohio.  He  was  educated  at  the  Quaker  school  at  Middle- 
ton  and  at  a  college  at  Mt.  Union,  Ohio. 
He  attended  college  but  two  years.  While 
at  Mt.  Union  he  united  with  the  Meth- 
odist church.  His  sister  Anna  had  mar- 
ried A.  L.  Taylor,  who  moved  with  his 
family  to  Atchison  county,  Kansas,  in  the 
spring  of  1857,  settling  on  a  claim  one 
and  three-fourths  miles  southwest  of  the 
village  of  Pardee,  on  the  road  leading 
from  Atchison  to  Topeka  by  way  of  Grass- 
hopper Falls.  In  the  summer  of  1857 
Lipsey  went  to  Kansas,  stopping  there 
with  his  sister.  There  he  united  with  the 
Christian  church  of  which  Rev.  Pardee 
Butler  was  pastor.  He  worked  on  the  farm  and  taught  a  school 
at  Pardee.  In  1858  he  started  with  a  freighting  train  across 
the  Plains,  but  became  ill  and  was  compelled  to  return  home. 
In  the  spring  of  1860  he  went  in  company  with  two  brothers 
named  Smith  to  Pike's  Peak  to  dig  gold.  This  trip  was  a  fail- 
ure so  far  as  securing  gold  was  concerned,  and  he  and  another 
Pike's  Peaker  walked  back  to  Atchison  county.  They  were  al- 
most famished,  had  suffered  much  from  cold,  being  compelled 
to  travel  at  night  to  avoid  freezing.  After  his  return  he  went 
west  on  a  buffalo  hunt  to  the  country  beyond  the  Blue  river. 
And  when  he  returned,  he  went  on  the  fatal  raid  to  Morgan 
Walker's.  He  seems  never  to  have  been  previously  in  any  raid 
into  Missouri  to  liberate  slaves.  His  sisters  say  he  was  never  out 
of  Kansas  after  his  arrival  in  the  Territory,  except  on  the  Pike's 

2  Statement  of  Eev.  J.  J.  Lutz  and  letters  of  E.  L.  Harris  to  Lutz 
now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  Also  article  by  Lutz  in  Midland 
Monthly,  Des  Moines,  Iowa,  June,  1897. 


Ch«lldey  T.  Lip«ey 


142          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Peak  trip,  until  he  went  on  the  fatal  raid  with  Quantrill.  And 
they  did  not  know  of  his  having  lived  in  the  cabin  with  Harris, 
Morrison,  Ball,  and  Southwick,  though  he  may  have  done  so. 
He  may  have  gone  to  Iowa  with  a  cargo  of  slaves,  but  the  proba- 
bility is  that  he  did  not  do  so.  His  sympathy  was  with  the 
slaves,  and  he  aided  those  who  passed  through  Pardee  or  were 
assisted  to  reach  that  place.  There  is  no  evidence  that  he  ever 
saw  Quantrill  until  he  met  him  to  go  on  the  raid  which  ended  at 
Morgan  Walker's.  It  is  not  known  that  he  previously  knew 
John  Dean,  though  Dean  says  Morrison,  Ball,  and  Lipsey  were 
his  men.3 

Edwin  S.  Morrison  was  born  April  16,  1839.  His  birth- 
place was  either  Rutland  county,  Vermont,  or  Erie  county, 
New  York.  His  ancestors  went  from  Aberdeen,  Scotland,  to 
Londonderry,  Ireland,  and  from  thence  to  Londonderry,  N.  H. 
From  that  point  his  great-grandfather  moved  to  Rutland  county, 
Vermont,  from  which  place  his  father  moved  to  Erie  county, 
New  York,  where  it  is  probable  that  his  son  was  born.  In  1853 
the  family  moved  to  Springdale,  Iowa.  He  was  a  birthright 
member  of  the  Quaker  church,  his  ancestors  having  been  Quakers 
for  generations.  He  had  a  common-school  education  and  was 
industrious,  sturdy,  faithful,  quiet,  and  honest.  He  came  to 
Kansas  in  1859  in  company  with  his  cousin,  Albert  Southwick, 
Albert  Negus,  and  his  wife  Martha.  Mrs.  Negus  was  the  daugh- 
ter of  Benjamin  Ball  and  sister  to  Charles  Ball.  Morrison  and 
Southwick  were  carpenters,  and  they  built  a  dwelling  for  Negus, 
on  his  claim,  one  mile  south  of  Pardee,  Atchison  county.4 

Albert  Southwick  was  born  in  Ohio  in  1837.  His  parents 
were  Quakers,  and  they  moved  to  Springdale,  Iowa,  about  the 
year  1852.  He  came  to  Kansas  with  his  cousin,  Edwin  S.  Mor- 
rison, in  the  company  of  Albert  Negus,  early  in  1859.  They  all 
settled  near  Pardee.  Southwick  started  on  the  raid  which  ended 
at  Morgan  Walker's,  but  at  Osawatomie  he  was  persuaded  to 

3  Letters  of  E.  Anna  Taylor  and  Mrs.  Charles  L.  Trueblood  to  Rev. 
J.  J.  Lutz,  dated  at  Springdale,  Iowa,  in  1897,  now  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author.    Also  article  in  Midland  Monthly,  by  Lutz,  June,  1897. 

4  Letters  of  D.  B.  Morrison,  Springdale,  Iowa,   1897,  to  Eev.  J.  J. 
Lutz,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.     Also  article  by  Lutz  in  the 
Midland  Monthly,  Des  Moines,  Iowa,  June,  1897. 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID 


143 


\- 

Albert  Southwick 


abandon  it,  and  Elias  Snyder  believes  that  he  remained  there 
with  Captain  Ely  Snyder  until  it  was 
known  that  Quantrill  had  betrayed  his 
companions  to  death.  He  afterward  said 
that  he  had  been  at  Walker's  in  the  raid, 
and  that  he  returned  there  in  the  capacity 
of  spy  to  get  the  particulars  of  the  trag- 
edy. There  is  little  probability  that  he 
ever  went  back  to  Walker's.  It  is  possi- 
ble, and  even  probable,  that  he  slipped 
away  from  Snyder  to  go  with  Dean  in 
the  wagon  to  aid  Quantrill  at  Morgan 
Walker's  farm.  He  seems  to  have  been 
of  very  limited  intelligence  and  somewhat 
unbalanced.  He  served  in  the  10th  Kan- 
sas during  the  Civil  War,  after  which  he  lived  in  Salina,  Kan- 
sas, where  he  was  in  the  coal  business.  He  moved  to  Kansas 
City,  Mo.,  and  there  died  about  the  year  1893.  His  statements 
concerning  the  Walker  raid  are  incoherent  and  conflicting.* 

Ransom  L.  Harris  was  born  in  Addison  county,  Vermont, 
in  1842.  His  parents  were  Quakers,  and  they  moved  to  Spring- 
dale,  Iowa,  in  1852.  He  had  a  common-school  education.  Har- 
ris says  he  came  to  Kansas  in  March,  1859,  for  the  purpose  of 
liberating  slaves  to  go  out  over  the  underground  railroad.  He 
settled  at  Pardee.  In  Iowa  he  had  known  Ball,  Morrison,  and 
others  who  engaged  in  this  business,  but  became  acquainted  with 
Lipsey  in  Kansas.  He  was  in  the  10th  Kansas,  and  in  May, 
1863,  General  James  H.  Lane  made  him  first  lieutenant  in  the 
First  Colored  regiment.  He  was  wounded  at  the  battle  at 
Poison  Springs,  and  was  discharged  for  disability.  Returning 
to  Iowa,  he  became  a  physician.6 

s  Letters  of  E.  Anna  Taylor  and  Mrs.  Charles  L.  Trueblood  to  Eev. 
J.  J.  Lutz,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  Also  article  by  Lutz  in  the 
Midland  Monthly,  Des  Moines,  Iowa,  June,  1897. 

There  is  a  long  statement  made  by  the  sisters,  Taylor  and  True- 
blood,  of  what  Southwick  told  them  of  the  raid;  this  statement  is  in  the 
Collection  of  the  author. 

6  Letters  of  R.  L.  Harris  to  Eev.  J.  J.  Lutz,  dated  in  1897,  at  Audu- 
bon,  Iowa,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  Also  the  article  of  Lutz  in 


144          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

In  Springdale,  Iowa,  Charles  Ball,  Morrison,  Lipsey,  South- 
wick,  and  others  were  members  of  a  secret  lodge  which  had  been 
organized  to  forward  the  freedom  of  slaves.  In  the  lodge  the 
whole  subject  of  operating  the  underground  railroad  was  con- 
stantly under  discussion.  The  members  of  this  lodge  were  able 
to  maintain  themselves  in  a  high  degree  of  excitement  by  attend- 
ing the  meetings  of  another  lodge,  debating  society,  or  "Con- 
gress." In  the  winter  of  1857-58  John  Brown  stationed  his  men 
at  Springdale.  He  directed  that  they  form  a  "Congress"  in 
which  to  discuss  all  features  of  the  slavery  question.  In  this 
body  the  whole  slave-system,  its  actions,  the  attitude  of  all  par- 
ties toward  it,  its  probable  fate,  were  discussed  with  great  earn- 
estness and  considerable  eloquence  by  John  Brown's  men.  Some 
of  the  citizens  joined  in  the  debates,  and  when  John  Brown  was 
at  Springdale  he  was  always  present  at  the  meetings  and  took 
part  in  the  discussions.  Stevens,  Kagi,  Realf,  and  others  were 
splendid  speakers,  and  they  kept  the  enthusiasm  of  the  young 
men  at  white  heat.  This  was  the  real  cause  of  their  moving  to 
Kansas  and  their  settlement  at  Pardee.? 


the  Midland  Monthly.  Lutz  submitted  a  long  list  of  questions  to  Harris 
concerning  the  Walker  raid,  and  these  were  answered  by  Harris.  Ques- 
tions and  answers  are  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  The  document 
contains  conflicting  statements  and  assertions  which  are  at  variance  from 
known  facts.  Harris  says  Southwick  was  in  the  Morgan  Walker  raid. 

7  It  will  be  remembered  that  in  the  winter  of  -57  &  8,  John  Brown  and 
his  men  were  in  rendezvous  in  Springdale,  or  near  this  village.  Among 
these  men  were  Eealf,  Cook,  Kagi.  These  three  were  gifted  men  with  high 
attainments  and  acquirements,  and  among  these  were  grand  oratorical 
powers.  We  had  at  that  time  what  we  termed  a  mock  Legislature,  where 
all  most  vital  questions  of  the  day  were  discussed.  Among  which  were  the 
Mo.  Compromise;  the  fugitive  slave  laws;  the  chief  Judge  Taney  decision; 
and  the  outrages  perpetrated  on  the  free  state  men  in  bleeding  Kansas,  &c, 
&c.  These  three  men  became  members  and  took  an  active  part  in  the  de- 
bates. The  two  first  were  brilliant  men  and  could  hold  a  crowded  house 
almost  spell-bound.  They  were  just  from  bleeding  Kansas  and  were  no 
doubt  justly  inflamed  against  the  Missourians  for  dreadful  outrages  per- 
petrated on  the  free  state  men  of  Kansas.  Kagi,  though  not  so  brilliant 
as  the  others  was  in  my  humble  opinion  the  man  of  the  greatest  mental 
depth  and  breadth  of  all  the  party,  in  fact  these  three  men  were  all  the 
mental  superiors  of  Old  John  Brown  himself.  John  Brown  impressed  me 
as  a  sturdy,  honest  man  with  the  courage  of  conviction  and  made  of  the 
same  stuff  that  martyrs  are  made  of.  However  these  boys  listened  to 
these  debates,  and  the  tales  of  horror  related  by  them  of  bleeding  Kansas, 
as  they  also  read  of  them  in  the  daily  papers  as  they  appeared  in  flaming 
headlines.  And  there  and  then  I  make  no  doubt  the  lattent  fires  of  their 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  145 

Immediately  upon  their  arrival  in  Kansas,  Ball,  Morrison, 
and  Southwick  organized  a  secret  lodge  to  arrange  for  the  trans- 
portation of  rescued  or  escaped  slaves  over  the  underground 
railroad.8  They  lived  in  a  little  log  cabin,  12  by  14  feet,  on  the 
claim  of  Benjamin  Ball,  "keeping  bach"  there.  They  worked 
at  farming  or  other  occupations  during  the  day,  and  at  night 
they  discussed  the  ways  and  means  successfully  to  invade  Mis- 
souri to  secure  slaves  to  take  to  Canada.  There  is  little  doubt 
that  John  Dean  (who  came  to  Kansas  from  Iowa)  was  well 
known  to  these  young  men,  and,  being  blatant  and  insistent, 
impressed  them  as  a  great  champion  of  human  rights.  One  suc- 
cessful raid  was  made  by  them  into  Missouri  under  the  leader- 
ship of  Dean  and  Stewart.  Some  ten  or  twelve  slaves  were  se- 
cured, and  these  were  delivered  over  to  the  "underground"  at 
Springdale,  where  some  of  them  live  to  this  day  —  others  being 
taken  on  to  Canada.  This  raid  was  made  in  the  summer  of  1860, 
but  is  not  identified,  and  it  is  not  known  from  what  part  of  Mis- 
souri the  slaves  were  taken.' 

Harris  says  that  Quantrill  visited  the  cabin  where  these 
boys  lived  —  that  he  came  there  once  during  the  summer  (1860) 
but  that  he  was  absent  at  the  time  and  did  not  see  him.  Mrs. 


love  for  justice  and  humanity  -were  kindled,  and  they  determined  to  lend 
a  helping  hand  to  make  Kansas  a  free  state.  I  think  that  most  men  on  the 
higher  planes  of  thought  and  feeling  recognize  at  times  a  conflict  between 
human  enactments  and  that  higher  law  of  their  being;  and  so  reserve  the 
right  to  owe  their  highest  allegiance  to  the  higher  law,  and  suffer  the 
human  penalties.  And  I  believe  these  to  have  been  in  the  main  the  thoughts 
and  feelings  that  actuated  these  young  men.  —  From  letter  of  D.  B.  Morri- 
son to  Eev.  J.  J,  Luis,  Springdale,  Iowa,  April  S,  1897,  now  in  the  Collec- 
tion of  the  author. 

8  Statement  of  E.  L.  Harris  in  a  letter  to  Rev.  J.  J.  Lutz,  dated 
Audubon,  Iowa,  March  3,  1897,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

9  Statement  of  Eev.  J.  J.  Lutz  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 
Lutz  obtained  his  information  from  the  family  of  Ball,  which  he  visited 
for  that  purpose.     In  the  list  of  questions  and  answers  Harris  had  this 
raid   confused   with   that   to    Morgan   Walker's,   in   all    probability.     The 
Morrisons  question   the  presence   of   Harris  at   the  Pardee   settlement   of 
Springdale  Quakers.     But  he  was  there,  no  doubt.     His  dates  are  wholly 
unreliable  and  some  of  his  statements  are  wild,  but  he  pretty  well  describes 
the  preparations  made   for  the  Walker   raid,   though  he   has  it  in  May, 
1857  —  about  the  time  in  1860  that  the  first  raid  was  made  and  in  which 
the  slaves  were  secured  that  were  taken  to  Springdale. 

11 


146          QUANTEILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Taylor  says  her  brother,  Lipsey,  spoke  of  Charley  Hart.  He 
must  have  visited  the  cabin  frequently  during  the  summer  of 
1860,  but  the  first  acquaintance  with  him  was  doubtless  at  Law- 
rence through  Dean.  Southwick  says  it  was  at  Lawrence.10 

It  was  necessary  for  Quantrill  to  get  out  of  Kansas  quickly. 
He  had  made  up  his  mind  to  do  so.  It  was  his  desire  to  make  a 
master-stroke  in  getting  out,  but  the  caution  of  Stewart  made  it 
impossible  to  pilot  him  to  his  death  at  Morgan  Walker's.  This 
Walker  raid  had  cost  Quantrill  much  time  and  pains ;  he  had  set 
his  heart  on  it.  It  seemed  that  he  must  give  it  up  and  escape 
to  Missouri  in  his  favorite  role  of  detective.  But  the  devil  cares 
for  his  own,  and  the  fates  threw  into  bloody  hands  the  active 
anti-slavery  members  of  the  Springdale  Quaker  settlement  at 
Pardee.  An  expedition  for  slaves  was  planned,  and  its  failure 
gave  Quantrill  the  opportunity  he  had  so  long  desired  and  so 
persistently  waited  for. 

The  expedition  was  planned  at  Lawrence.  Three  Cherokee 
refugee  slaves  were  at  Springdale,  Iowa.  It  is  not  known  that 
they  had  ever  been  sent  on  to  Canada,  but  it  is  believed  they 
had  been,  and  that  they  had  returned  from  Canada  to  Spring- 
dale.  In  any  event,  they  came  from  Springdale  to  the  Quaker 
settlement  at  Pardee.  Their  object  was  to  secure  assistance 
to  enable  their  relatives  who  were  still  slaves  in  the  Cherokee 
Nation  to  escape  and  return  with  them  to  Springdale  or  to 
Canada.  Their  appeal  to  the  Quakers  at  Pardee  met  with  a 
ready  response,  and  Ball,  Morrison,  Southwick,  and  Lipsey  went 
with  them  to  Lawrence.  These  negroes  were  William  Thomp- 
son, John  Thompson,  his  brother,  and  John  Martin.11 

10  Statement  given  to  Rev.  J.  J.  Lutz  by  Mrs.  Martha  Negus,  now 
in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

"  These  negroes  remained  at  Osawatomie.  When  the  Civil  War  began 
the  Thompsons  went  into  the  Union  army  at  Fort  Scott  as  teamsters. 
They  served  until  the  war  closed,  part  of  the  time  as  enlisted  men.  Martin 
lived  at  Osawatomie  until  about  1890,  when  he  moved  to  Garnett,  where 
he  afterwards  died.  This  information  was  given  me  by  Elias  Snyder,  who 
lives  near  Osawatomie,  and  who  is  the  son  of  Captain  Ely  Snyder,  and 
who  knows  the  facts.  The  author  visited  Mr.  Snyder  on  the  18th  day  of 
October,  1907,  and  secured  from  him  a  long  statement  covering  many 
Territorial  subjects.  These  Cherokee  refugees  are  mentioned  also  in  a 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  147 

The  expedition  was  carefully  planned.  It  was  to  go  into 
the  Cherokee  Nation  and  rescue  and  bring  out  the  relatives  of 
Martin  and  the  Thompsons  and  as  many  other  slaves  as  possi- 
ble. Men  enough  for  the  purpose  could  not  be  secured  at  Law- 
rence because  of  the  great  distance  to  be  traveled  and  the  dan- 
ger to  be  incurred  in  operating  so  far  away  from  home.  It  was 
supposed  that  additional  men  could  be  had  at  Osawatomie;  the 
first  stage  of  the  invasion  ended  there  with  the  effort  to  enlist 
the  men  necessary  to  its  success.  Those  who  arrived  at  Osa- 
watomie from  Lawrence  were  Quantrill,  Dean,  Morrison,  Ball, 
Southwick,  Lipsey,  John  S.  Jones  who  went  under  the  name  of 
"Mr.  Baker,"12  and  the  three  Cherokee  negroes. 

Quantrill  preceded  the  others  of  the  party,  arriving  at  Osa- 
watomie some  days  before  they  appeared.  He  registered  as 
Charley  Hart  at  the  old  hotel  kept  by  Gears,  but  he  was  so  well 
known  there  that  he  deceived  no  one.  It  is  remembered  that  at 
Osawatomie  he  was  sometimes  called  "Ed  Hart,"  and  he  made 
hs  headquarters  at  the  postoffice,  where  there  was  a  pro-slavery 
postmaster. 

After  Quantrill  had  been  gone  some  days  the  others  of  the 

letter  of  Captain  Ely  Snyder  to  G.  A.  Colton,  dated  Osawatomie,  Feb.  14, 
1883,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

There  is  some  reason  to  believe  that  Quantrill  wag  in  hiding  when 
the  Pardee  party  arrived  at  Lawrence  on  the  way  to  the  Cherokee  Nation, 
and  that  John  Dean,  knowing  his  whereabouts,  sent  him  an  invitation  to 
join  the  party.  The  following  extract  from  the  Lawrence  Tribune  sup- 
ports this  view: 

Early  the  next  morning  —  before  the  people  were  astir  —  Quantrell 
was  furnished  with  a  day's  provisions  and  a  bottle  of  whisky,  and  got 
safely  out  of  town  to  a  snug  place  in  the  timber,  two  or  three  miles  north- 
west from  Lawrence,  where  he  kindled  a  small  fire  and  spent  the  day  alone. 
That  night  a  party  of  five  young  men,  all  reckless  and  enthusiastic 
Abolitionists,  took  Quantrell  into  a  wagon  and  started  for  Missouri.  Their 
object  was  doubtless  to  help  off  some  slaves  and  send  them  on  to  freedom 
in  Canada,  via  Lawrence  and  Nebraska. 

This  was  the  day  after  Sheriff  Walker  had  attempted  to  arrest 
Quantrill  and  he  ran  into  Dean's  shop. 

12  When  the  Civil  War  began  Jones  enlisted  in  the  5th  Kansas  under 
his  correct  name.  He  enlisted  as  a  private  in  Company  H,  October  13, 
1861;  discharged  at  Fort  Leavenworth,  Dec.  11,  1864.  He  re-enlisted  in 
the  Hancock  Corps.  Authority:  statement  of  Elias  Snyder  and  the  re- 
port of  the  adjutant  general  of  Kansas. 


148          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

party  left  Lawrence  for  Osawatomie,  though  they  said  they 
were  going  on  a  buffalo  hunt.  They  employed  William  Part- 
ridge to  haul  them  in  his  wagon.  They  traveled  west  from 
Lawrence  two  days,  then  turned  south,  then  went  east  to  Osa- 
watomie. This  roundabout  course  was  selected  by  Dean,  who 
was  the  leader  of  the  party,  and  who  doubtless  supposed  he  was 
displaying  great  generalship  and  fooling  people.1 3  Still  further 
to  show  his  genius  as  slave-stealer,  Dean  would  not  recognize 
Quantrill  when  he  first  arrived  with  the  wagon-party,  nor  allow 
the  others  of  the  party  to  do  so,  pretending  never  to  have  seen 
Quantrill  before,  meeting  him  as  an  entire  stranegr  and  gradu- 
ally working  up  an  acquaintance  with  him.  Dean  was  known  to 
Captain  Ely  Snyder,  and  after  his  arrival  he  laid  his  whole 
scheme  before  Snyder  and  others  and  requested  their  aid. 
Snyder  immediately  condemned  the  expedition  as  impracticable 
and  refused  to  have  anything  to  do  with  it.  Dean  then  took 
Quantrill  to  Snyder,  saying  that  Quantrill  believed  the  invasion 
of  the  Cherokee  Nation  feasible  and  had  consented  to  be  one  of 
the  invaders.  Snyder  quickly  told  Dean  that  he  knew  Quantrill 

13  I  left  Lawrence  in  November,  1860,  to  build  houses  on  a  govern- 
ment contract  for  the  Sac  and  Fox  Indians  on  the  Marais  des  Cygnes,  near 
where  Quenemo  is  now  situated.  After  I  had  been  there  a  few  weeks  I 
was  aroused  one  night  by  some  one  calling  my  name  aloud.  On  going  out 
I  found  the  caller  to  be  William  Partridge,  of  Lawrence,  whom  I  knew 
to  be  a  reliable  abolitionist.  He  wanted  to  know  if  he  could  stop  with  me 
a  few  days.  I  told  him  he  could.  After  the  team  was  cared  for,  I  in- 
quired how  long  since  he  left  Lawrence,  etc.  He  replied  he  had  been  out 
some  days,  and  volunteered  the  statement,  "I  would  hear  something  drop 
soon, ' '  and  went  on  to  say  that  Quantrill  and  John  Dean  hired  him  with 
his  team  to  take  them,  Charles  Ball,  and  a  man  that  worked  for  Dean,  and 
another  man  or  two  I  did  not  know,  out  on  the  plains  for  a  buffalo  hunt, 
and  that  after  traveling  west  a  couple  of  days  they  turned  south,  and 
later  on,  east,  and  finally  turned  up  in  southern  Kansas,  where  there  were 
known  to  live  some  ' '  reliable  parties. ' '  At  this  place  there  was  a  con- 
ference of  two  or  three  days,  and  one  or  two  of  the  original  parties  dropped 
out  and  their  places  filled  by  others  from  that  community;  and  he  added: 
"I  delivered  my  load  where  they  said  they  wanted  to  stop,  and  I  pulled 
out.  I  guess  they  will  find  transportation  home  all  right. ' '  I  heard 
nothing  further  from  the  expedition  for  probably  ten  days,  when  the  word 
came,  "All  killed  but  Dean,  and  he  wounded  and  missing."  Dean,  how- 
ever, turned  up  after  a  few  days  with  a  bullet  in  his  foot,  and  was  lodged 
in  the  Douglas  county  Jail  on  some  trivial  charge  made  by  his  friends, 
who  evidently  considered  a  Kansas  jail  preferable  to  one  in  Missouri. 
Soon  after  this  the  war  commenced,  and  we  held  no  further  communication 
with  Missouri,  and  Dean  was  released.  —  H.  S.  Clarice,  in  the  Seventh 
Volume,  Kansas  Historical  Collections,  pp.  220,  221. 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  149 

well  and  did  not  trust  him  at  all  —  that  Quantrill's  reputation 
at  Osawatomie  was  bad.  Dean  was  very  reluctant  to  believe  this, 
but  Jones  (Baker),  Southwick,  and  the  negroes  were  soon  con- 
vinced and  refused  to  have  anything  further  to  do  with  Quan- 
trill.  The  Cherokee  invasion  was  abandoned. 

When  the  expedition  into  the  Cherokee  Nation  was  given 
up  Quantrill  began  to  talk  of  the  Morgan  Walker  raid.  He  had 
made  up  his  mind  to  leave  Kansas  on  that  trip.  He  saw  an  op- 
portunity to  kidnap  three  lusty  refugees  and  sell  them  in  Mis- 
souri. He  made  extraordinary  efforts  to  induce  the  negroes  to 
go  to  Walker's,  but  they  grew  more  and  more  suspicious  of  him 
and  his  intentions.  He  told  them  that  they  would  be  of  great 
benefit  in  the  raid,  as  they  would  prevail  on  Walker's  negroes  to 
leave  him  in  a  body  and  to  fight  if  they  were  pursued.1* 

14  Quantrill  had  made  raids  into  Missouri  from  Osawatomie  in  com- 
pany with  Jennison  and  others.  He  borrowed  a  pistol  once  of  a  party 
who  could  not  go.  This  pistol  he  refused  to  return,  saying  that  he  had  not 
been  given  an  equitable  portion  of  the  loot  secured  on  the  raid.  He 
called  himself  Hart  —  sometimes  "Ed"  Hart  and  sometimes  "Charley" 
Hart  when  at  Osawatomie.  Captain  Snyder  had  been  on  raids  into  Mis- 
souri with  him  and  had  concluded  that  he  was  false  —  a  traitor.  These 
raids  were  into  Cass  and  Bates  counties  in  Missouri.  When  Quantrill 
went  into  Missouri  alone  he  always  reported  on  his  return  that  he  had 
been  there  in  the  capacity  of  a  detective  —  spy.  He  always  told  the 
border-ruffians  this  same  story  when  questioned  as  to  his  association  with 
the  Free-State  men. 

In  the  Collection  of  the  author  are  a  number  of  letters  written  by 
one  W.  L.  Potter  to  W.  W.  Scott.  Potter  was  a  border-ruffian,  a  hanger- 
on  about  the  offices  of  pro-slavery  officials,  often  acting  as  deputy  U.  8. 
marshal,  deputy  sheriff,  deputy  jailer,  deputy  constable.  In  these  letters 
he  claimed  to  have  been  very  intimate  with  Quantrill,  calling  him  "Bill" 
Quantrill.  Potter  was  a  sort  of  irregular  Confederate  soldier  —  a  sort  of 
wandering  pirate  —  roving  about  from  one  command  to  another.  These 
letters  are  boastful,  egotistical,  inaccurate  as  to  dates  and  incidents  (they 
would  suit  the  Eobinson  partisans  of  Kansas  exactly,  as  they  claim  that 
John  Brown  was  still  destroying  Missouri  in  1861),  and  they  are  a  dead 
match  for  those  of  Dean  for  involved  construction  and  far  surpassing 
Dean's  in  general  rambling  and  complete  failure  to  come  to  the  point. 
There  are  streaks  of  facts  in  them,  however,  though  mixed  with  much 
that,  to  say  the  least,  is  wholly  untrue.  They  were  written  from  Harrison, 
Ark.,  in  1895  and  1896.  In  one  about  December,  1896,  he  gives  at  great 
length  and  with  many  digressions  an  account  of  Quantrill's  spying  on  the 


150          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Quantrill  finally  prevailed  over  Snyder.  The  raid  to  Mor- 
gan Walker's  was  determined  upon,  and  hopes  almost  blasted 
were  finally  to  be  realized.  True,  he  was  to  have  no  prominent 
Kansas  characters  with  him  to  betray  to  death,  but  those  he  had 
were  to  him  better  than  to  have  none  at  all  to  murder.  *s 


Free-State  men.  Potter  was  living  at  Paola  when  the  matters  he  describes 
occurred : 

I  will  take  time  to  make  notes  of  every  thing  of  importance,  that  I 
can  remember  concerning,  the  Brave  &  Gallant  Quantrell. 

There  was  no  officer  in  the  Trans  Miss[iss]ippi  Department  during 
the  War,  that  was  admired  &  Honored  by  the  Confederates  as  W  C  Quan- 
trell was.  .  .  . 

It  was  in  the  fall  of  1860  That  a  meeting  was  held  up  stairs  of  the 
Union  Hotel  in  Paola  Elan.  I  was  there  as  well  as  every  one,  then  Present 
by  special  invitation.  None  but  those  who  were  known  to  be  opposed  to 
the  Jay  Hawking  carried  on  by  Montgomery  Jennison  &  Ossawatomie 
Brown,  or  John  Brown  &  their  followers,  were  admitted,  or  knew  of  our 
Meeting.  The  following  citizens  of  Paola  to  my  certain  knowledge  were 
Present  some  of  whom  are  still  living  Dr  W  D  Hoover  now  in  Paola  & 
Geo  W.  Miller  Ex  circuit  Judge  of  Denver  Colorado  The  rest  of  the 
members  of  that  assembly  are  now  Dead,  except  the  writer  Their  names 
were  Lawyer  E.  W.  White  Lawyer  Robert  White,  Lawyer  Massey  Dr 
Taylor,  Goodwin  Taylor  a  Merchant,  Allen  T.  Ward  Merchant,  Thomas 
Kelley,  General  Seth  Clover  Indian  agent  &  Col  Torrey  I  think  was  there 
&  some  one  or  two  others  that  I  do  not  remember  —  Wm  C  Quantrell  was 
I  introduced  him  to  the  citizens  He  stated  to  us  that  he  was  at  Lawrence 
or  Topeka  Kansas  in  Nov  1860  .  .  .  Quantrell  said  that  he  wanted  to 
get  Jennison  in  a  Place  where  he  could  either  capture  or  Lawfully  kill 
him  .  .  .  Quantrell  stated,  at  the  meeting  that  the  Jayhawkers,  while  in 
camp  near  Ossawatomi  had  contemplated  a  Raid  on  Paola,  intending  to 
rob  the  stores  &  the  Town,  and  also  contemplated  the  Robbing  of  the 
Kansas  City,  Paola  &  Fort  Scott  Stage  with  the  money  that  was  expected 
to  be  sent  to  Gen  Clover,  The  agent  for  the  Miami  Indians  some  $30000 

He  sent  word  to  Gen  Clover  to  that  Effect  before  the  Payment  was 
Made,  a  company  of  Infantry  under  Major  Brook,  from  Leaven  worth 
was  sent  to  escort  the  money  to  Paola,  &  remained  in  Miami  Co  until  after 
the  Payment  was  made.  I  will  say  here  that  the  Jay  hawkers  never 
made  an  attack  on  Paola,  but  then  it  was  often  threatened. 

After  the  interview  was  over  Quantrill  espressed  his  willingness  to 
answer  any  and  all  questions  concerning  his  connections  with  Jennison 

He  also  stated  that  the  Jayhawkers,  received  $60.00  Per  head  for  all 
the  slaves  they  stole  out  of  Missouri,  &  delivered  to  the  agents  of  the 
Underground  Rail  Road  company 

Who  forwarded  them  on  to  Canada. 

15  In  the  Collection  of  the  author  there  is  a  letter  written  by  Cap- 
tain Ely  Snyder  to  G.  D.  Colton,  who  lived  then  at  Paola.  The  letter  is 
dated  at  Osawatomie,  Feb.  14^  1883,  and  says: 

in  the  year  1860  some  time  in  the  month  of  Dec  Late  one  Eve  [n]  ing 
10  men  and  a  two  horses  wageon  with  one  man  the  o[w]ner  of  the  Team 
w[h]ich  would  make  11  men  Stopt  at  my  house  in  Osawatomie  ask  me  to 
Stay  all  Night  I  Told  them  that  my  House  was  Small  that  I  co[u]ld  not 
accommodate  them  thay  said  thay  must  Stay  if  thay  had  to  Stay  in  the 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  151 

barn  they  wair  all  Strangers  to  me  at  that  time  and  I  thought  that  thay 
might  not  be  on  Eny  good  as  thay  was  one  Thousand  dollars  Reward  for 
me  then  in  Masurie  I  had  a  em[p]ty  house  a  short  distance  from  mine 
and  give  them  the  key  and  told  them  to  go  in  that  house  w[h]ich  thay 
did  thair  wag  7  white  men  and  3  black  men  besides  the  teamster  w[h]ich 
went  away  the  next  mor[n]ing  the  ten  Stayed  in  the  house  but  I  seen 
thay  had  Som[e]  Object  in  v[i]ew  but  did  not  tell  me  what  it  was  for 
Som[e]  days  when  thay  told  me  that  thay  Started  from  Lar ranee  with  the 
Intention  of  going  toe  the  Cherekee  Nation  to  bring  out  Some  Slaves  and 
wanted  me  to  take  my  team  and  wageon  and  go  with  them  as  thair  Cap- 
tain I  decline  and  told  them  it  was  in  the  cold  winter  and  it  wo[u]ld 
take  a  big  sum  of  Money  to  Accomplish  eny  thing  and  I  found  out  that 
thay  had  Little  Money  So  I  perswaded  them  that  thay  had  better  Let 
the  Job  out  at  presant  they  then  perposed  that  thay  wo[u]ld  cut  me 
Some  wood  thay  all  went  to  wurk  but  Quantrill  and  he  made  his  hed 
quarters  at  the  Post  Office  it  was  then  proslavery  post  office  and  the  plan 
of  the  rade  on  Wa[l]ker  was  in  my  [kjnowing  got  up  in  the  Post  office 
at  Osawatomie  and  had  it  not  been  for  myself  perswadeing  the  9  men 
Quantrill  wo[u]ld  have  got  all  the  party  in  the  Same  boat  as  he  did  the 
three  that  he  persw[a]ded  to  go  with  him  I  went  to  the  Timber  wair 
theas  wair  at  work  and  got  them  all  Together  and  told  them  that  I 
k[n]ew  that  Quantrill  wo[u]ld  get  them  in  tro[u]ble  if  thay  did  go  with 
him  John  M.  Dean,  Albert  Southwork  and  John  Jones,  William  Thomson 
John  Thomson  and  John  Martin  the  three  Last  names  are  the  names  of 
the  three  black  men  thay  wair  Cherekeys  fugitives  thay  wair  Intelligent 
black  men  and  So  wair  all  of  the  white  men  the  Six  names  that  I  have 
mentioned  took  my  A  [d] vice  and  did  not  go  with  Quantrill  to  Walkers 
but  the  other  three  got  very  Indignant  at  me  for  thinking  that  Quantrell 
wo[u]ld  by  Gilty  of  get[t]ing  them  in  tro[u]ble  the  name[s]  of  the  three 
that  wair  kill[e]d  at  Walkers  ones  name  was  Charles  Ball,  the  others 
Last  names  I  dont  remember  the  thair  anechiates  wair  Charles  and  Ed- 
went  and  the  three  went  from  my  House  on  the  morning  thay  started  for 
Walkers  and  Quantrell  started  from  the  Post  office  I  walked  with  them  a 
short  distance  and  bid  them  good  by  and  told  them  that  I  did  not  expect 
to  ever  see  them  again  thay  went  on  and  met  with  thair  fate  it  may  be 
that  I  can  get  thair  names  in  future  but  I  will  say  that  John  M.  Dean 
was  not  at  Walkers  nun  but  Quantrell  and  the  3  that  I  have  mentione[d] 

It  will  be  observed  that  Captain  Snyder  says  that  Quantrill  came 
to  his  house  in  the  wagon  of  Partridge,  but  he  is  in  error.  His  son,  Elias 
Snyder,  says  that  Quantrill  arrived  some  days  ahead  of  the  others.  Cap- 
tain Snyder  also  says  that  the  men  were  all  strangers  to  him  when  they 
arrived  in  the  wagon,  but  it  is  well  known  that  both  Quantrill  and  Dean 
were  well  acquainted  with  Snyder  and  had  been  on  raids  into  Missouri 
with  him.  There  was  a  kind  of  Freemasonry  among  the  men  who  raided 
into  Missouri,  and  it  extended  to  the  end  of  life  in  many  cases,  and  they 
protected  one  another  in  all  statements  given  to  the  public.  And  for  this 
reason  Snyder  says  Dean  was  not  at  Walker's.  And  it  is  just  possible  that 
Snyder  did  not  know  that  Dean  went  to  Walker's  after  he  left  Osa- 
watomie. 

On  the  matters  touched  on  in  the  letter  of  Captain  Ely  Snyder  the 
text  in  this  chapter  follows  the  statements  made  by  Elias  Snyder  to  the 
author  at  his  house  on  October  18,  1907. 


CHAPTER  X 

QUANTEILL  AS  CHARLEY  HART,  THE  TRAITOR — 
THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID 

THE  men  who  went  from  Lawrence  to  Osawatomie  to  go 
into  the  Cherokee  Nation  were  Quantrill,  Dean,  Ball,  Mor- 
rison, Lipsey,  Southwick,  Jones  (Baker),  the  Thompson 
brothers  —  William  and  John,  and  John  Martin.    Of  these  men, 
only  Quantrill,  Ball,  Morrison,  and  Lipsey  left  Osawatomie  to 
go  to  Morgan  Walker's.     The  others  followed  the  advice  of 
Captain  Snyder  to  have  nothing  to  do  with  Quantrill  —  except 
Dean.1 

The  men  carried  for  arms  only  knives  and  revolvers.  Guns 
in  their  hands  would  have  aroused  suspicion  in  the  country 
through  which  they  were  to  pass  and  might  have  caused  them 
•serious  trouble.  Morrison  left 
his  Sharps 's  rifle  with  Elias 
Snyder.2  They  carried  blank- 
ets and  cooking  utensils  for  sharp»  Rifle  carried 
use  in  camping  in  the  woods  on  the  journey.  They  walked,  and 
they  pretended  to  be  on  their  way  to  work  on  the  Missouri  Pa- 
cific railroad,  then  being  graded  in  Lafayette  county,  Mo.s  There 

1  As  said  before,  Southwick  must  have  gone,  at  the  solicitation  of 
Dean,   with  the  wagon  which   Dean  procured   and   took   to   Walker's.     It 
was  possible  for  him  to  have  absented  himself  from  Osawatomie  a   day 
or  two  without  the  knowledge  of  the  Snyders,  and  he  must  have  done  so. 

2  Elias  Snyder  presented  this  gun  to  the  author  in  October,  1908.     It 
is  in  good  condition.     It  is  No.  1113. 

3  In  the  letter  of  E.  W.  Robinson,  f  6rmer  probate  judge  of  Miami 
county,  Kansas,  to  W.  W.  Scott,   dated  at  Paola,  Kansas,  May  9,  1881, 
now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  it  is  said: 

I  was  well  acquainted  with  Wm  C.  Quantrill  who  came  to  Kansas  in 
the  spring  of  1857  with  H.  V.  Beeson  &  family.  I  lived  in  the  same 
neighborhood,  at  Stanton  in  this  County  from  March  1857  —  to  Apr  1868, 
when  I  moved  to  Paola  the  Co.  Seat. 

I  saw  him  several  times  during  the  time  he  was  teaching  School  — 
in  the  winter  of  1858.  After  his  return  from  Salt  Lake  I  met  him  in 
Lawrence,  where  he  was  known  as  ' '  Charley  Hart ' '  and  where  I  first 
learned  from  him,  of  his  trip  to  Salt  Lake.  I  saw  him  next  while  on  his 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  153 

were  with  Quantrill  at  the  time  only  two  men.  Morrison,  Ball, 
and  Lipsey  left  Osawatomie  with  him.  Where  was  the  third 
man?  Had  he  been  sent  back  to  Osawatomie  secretly  to  find 
Southwick  and  induce  him  to  go  to  Walker's  with  Dean  in  the 
wagon  provided  by  Stone?  He  must  have  been,  and  he  must 
have  succeeded  in  his  mission. 

And  Dean.  What  of  him?  He  left  Osawatomie  before 
Quantrill  and  the  Pardee  Quakers  left  that  place  to  go  to  Mor- 
gan Walker's.  It  is  not  to  be  believed  that  the  Pardee  Quakers 
would  have  gone  with  Quantrill  had  Dean  forbidden  them. 
Neither  can  we  think  they  would  have  gone  had  not  Dean  as- 
sured them  that  he  would  meet  and  cooperate  with  them  at  the 
critical  moment.  There  was  a  wagon  in  waiting  near  the  house 
of  Morgan  Walker  on  the  night  of  the  attack.  This  wagon  and 
the  team  drawing  it  were  taken  there  by  John  Dean,  though  he 
says  in  his  letters  that  he  was  not  at  Morgan  Walker's.  The 
wagon  was  furnished  by  Stone,  proprietor  of  the  hotel  at  which 
Quantrill  lived  much  of  the  time.  Quantrill  must  have  sent  one 
of  his  men  to  guide  Dean  to  the  proper  locality.  This  course 
must  have  been  agreed  on  between  Quantrill  and  Dean.  Dean 
did  not  arrive  until  after  dark  and  after  Quantrill  had  returned 
to  camp  from  Walker's  house.  He  drove  by  the  road  and  wait- 
ed near  the  house  while  Quantrill  and  the  others  went  across  the 
fields  to  Morgan  Walker's  house.4 

way  to  Walkers  in  Jackson  Co.  Mo.  There  were  with  him  then  two  young 
men,  who  he  said  were  going  with  him  to  get  work  on  the  Mo.  Pacific 
E.  E.,  then  building  from  Lexington  to  Kan.  City.  A  few  days  later  we 
heard  of  the  Walker  Tragedy. 

The  statement  of  Judge  Eobinson  that  Quantrill  taught  school  in 
1858  is  erroneous,  as  is  shown  by  Quantrill  'a  letters,  published  herein, 
which  see  in  chapter  on  his  teaching  in  Kansas.  The  judge  trusted  to  his 
memory  alone  in  fixing  the  date. 

4  This  is  the  story  which  Dean  told  at  Lawrence  upon  his  return  with 
one  of  his  heels  shot  away.  He  told  only  a  few  and  told  them  for  the 
purpose  of  acquainting  them  with  his  reasons  for  wishing  to  be  arrested 
and  thrown  into  jail  for  the  attempted  murder  of  Allen  Pinks.  Among 
those  he  told  of  his  presence  at  Walker's  were  Captain  Stewart,  Samuel 
Walker,  and  H.  S.  Clarke.  Mr.  Clarke  so  informed  the  author  on  November 
4,  1907,  and  he  had  given  the  author  this  information  frequently  before 
that  time.  He  had,  in  addition  to  the  word  of  Dean,  the  statement  of 
M.  J.  Burlingame,  who  was  at  the  time  teaching  school  in  the  Morgan 


154          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 


The  exact  date  of  the  attack  on  Walker's  house  is  not  fixed. 
It  was  in  December,  1860,  perhaps  late  in  December.  Nor  is  it 
certain  as  to  the  number  of  men  who  went  to  the  house  with 
Quantrill.  Dean  had  not  gone  alone  with  the  wagon.  And  it 
is  possible  that  Quantrill  did  not  know  who  came  with  Dean,  as 
their  arrival  was  but  a  few  minutes  before  the  party  left  the 
camp  to  go  to  the  house.  Walker 's  son  speaks  of  Southwick  as  hav- 
ing been  one  of  the  party,  and  he  could  not  have  known  that  Quan- 
trill had  an  associate  of  that  name  but  from  Quantrill  himself. 

Morgan  Walker  was  a  Kentuckian  who  settled  near  Blue 
Springs,  Jackson  county,  Mo.,  in  1834.  He  was  a  man  of  affairs, 
and  he  owned  nearly  two  thousand  acres  of  fine  land,  upon  which 
he  lived.  His  house  contained  nine  large  rooms  —  five  below 
and  four  in  the  second  story.  It  was  three  miles  northeast  of 
Blue  Springs  and  nearly  seven  miles 
southeast  of  Independence.  He  owned 
some  thirty  slaves  and  more  than  a  hun- 
dred horses  and  mules,  and  he  had  a 
large  sum  in  gold  in  his  house.  The  house 
was  about  fifty  feet  in  length  and  stood 
north  and  south,  facing  east,  with  a  porch 
along  the  whole  front.  In  the  north  end 
of  the  porch  there  was  a  small  room  where 
harness  was  stored,  called  the  harness- 
room.  The  road  ran  north  of  the  house, 
and  the  house  was  back  from  the  road 
about  a  quarter  of  a  mile.  It  was  burned 
long  since.  Clustered  back  of  the  house 
were  barns,  cribs,  and  negro  quarters,  s 

Walker  district.  Notwithstanding  his  denial,  John  Dean  was  at  the  house 
of  Morgan  Walker  on  the  night  of  the  raid. 

The  adjutant  general's  report,  state  of  Kansas,  shows  that  Albert 
Southwick,  of  Springdale,  Iowa,  enlisted  in  company  C,  Tenth  Kansas 
regiment,  October  28,  1861,  and  was  mustered  out  August  20,  1864.  The 
State  Historical  Society  has  a  life-size  picture  of  Southwick  hanging  on 
the  wall,  a  gift  from  Eli  H.  Gregg,  first  sergeant  company  C,  Tenth  Kansas. 
Gregg  was  recruited  by  Barclay  Coppoc,  and  on  the  way  to  Kansas  when 
Coppoc  was  killed  by  the  burning  of  the  Platte  river  bridge.  At  least 
twice  in  John  M.  Dean's  correspondence,  Dean  inquires,  "Who  is  South- 
wick f" —  Kansas  Historical  Collections,  Vol.  VIII,  p.  330. 

S  In  the  letter  of  Andrew  J.  Walker,  son  of  Morgan  Walker,  to  W.  W. 


Morgan  Walker 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  155 

It  is  supposed  that  Quantrill  and  his  men,  or  some  of  them, 
had  been  in  camp  in  the  vicinity  of  the  Walker  farm  several 
days  prior  to  the  day  they  moved  near  the  house.  They  must 
have  talked  with  the  slaves  and  have  received  satisfactory  re- 
sponses before  venturing  upon  the  final  stage  of  the  raid.  It  is 
certain  that  the  attack  was  made  the  night  after  they  got  to  the 
farm.  Morgan  Walker  rode  to  Independence  that  day,  and  on 
the  road  he  met  Quantrill  and  his  men.  He  either  did  not  know 
Walker  or  pretended  not  to  know  him,  for  he  inquired  of  him 
for  Morgan  Walker  and  the  way  to  his  house.  Walker  replied: 
"I  am  the  man."  Quantrill  seems  to  have  had  no  business  to 
discuss,  and  he  only  asked  of  Walker  if  his  sons  were  at  home, 
which  shows  that  he  had  some  knowledge  of  the  family.  He 
probably  knew  Walker  well,  even  if  Walker  did  not  know  him. 

When  the  Jayhawkers  came  within  a  mile  of  the  house 
they  camped  in  a  thicket  in  a  piece  of  woodland.  Then  Quan- 
trill went  to  the  house  of  Andrew  J.  Walker,  son  of  Morgan 
Walker,  about  a  quarter  of  a  mile  from  the  residence  of  the 
senior  Walker,  arriving  there  about  eleven  o'clock  in  the  fore- 
noon. He  told  Andrew  J.  Walker  that  some  men  were  coming 
from  Kansas  that  night  to  rob  his  father;  that  they  were  lying 
in  wait  in  the  brush  and  had  sent  him  to  reconnoiter  the  prem- 
ises. He  told  all  their  plans  and  left  it  to  Walker  to  take  such 
action  as  he  might  deem  proper.  At  the  Morgan  Walker  home 
that  day  there  were  but  Mrs.  Walker,  her  daughter  Nancy, 

Scott,  dated  Lebeck,  Mo.,  Nov.  1889,  the  house  is  described  and  a  cut  or 
rude  drawing  of  it  made.  Says  the  letter :  ' '  The  house  stood  north  and 
south  5  large  rooms  below  and  four  above  porch  on  the  east  side  about 
50  feet  in  length  the  little  room  was  in  the  north  end  the  road  was 
north  of  the  house  about  a  quarter  of  a  mile  from  the  house." 

Morgan  Walker  was  an  old  citizen  of  Jackson  county  —  a  veritable 
pioneer.  He  had  settled  there  when  the  buffalo  grazed  on  the  prairies 
beyond  Westport,  and  when  in  the  soft  sands  along  the  inland  streams 
there  were  wolf  and  moccasin  tracks.  Stalwart,  hospitable,  broad  across 
the  back,  old-fashioned  in  his  courtesies  and  his  hospitalities,  he  fed  the 
poor,  helped  the  needy,  prayed  regularly  to  the  good  God,  did  right  by 
his  neighbors  and  his  friends,  and  only  swore  occasionally  at  the  Jay- 
hawkers  and  the  Abolitionists.  His  hands  might  have  been  rough  and  sun- 
browned,  but  they  were  always  open.  None  were  ever  turned  away  from 
his  door  hungry.  Under  the  old  roof  of  the  homestead  —  no  matter  what 
the  pressure  was  nor  how  large  the  demand  had  been  —  the  last  wayfarer 
got  the  same  comfort  as  the  first  —  and  altogether  they  got  the  best.  — 
Noted  Guerrillas,  or  the  Warfare  of  the  Border,  by  Major  John  N.  Edwards. 


and  the  negro  women.  It  was  agreed  that  Quantrill  should  lead 
his  companions  to  the  house,  aid  in  killing  them,  and  then  re- 
main with  Walker.  Andrew  J.  Walker  informed  four  of  the 
neighbors  —  John  Tatum,  Lee  Coger,  D.  C.  Williams,  and  one 
whose  name  is  now  lost.  They  armed  themselves  with  double- 
barreled  shot  guns  heavily  charged  with  buck-shot  and  repaired 
to  the  house  of  Morgan  Walker.  On  the  porch  near  the  little 
room  at  the  north  end  Mrs.  Walker  had  her  loom.  Andrew  J. 
Walker  put  three  of  his  men  in  the  little  room,  and  he  and  the 
other  one  concealed  themselves  behind  the  loom.  It  was  agreed 
that  Quantrill  and  his  men  should  go  into  the  house  to  talk  to 
Morgan  Walker  about  taking  away  his  slaves  and  other  property, 
and  that  Quantrill  should  remain  in  the  house.  When  the  others 
came  out  to  gather  up  the  slaves  they  were  to  be  fired  on  while 
they  were  yet  on  the  porch  in  the  light  streaming  through  the 
door. 

Morgan  Walker  came  home  from  Independence  about  ten 
minutes  before  Quantrill  and  his  victims  arrived  there.  He  was 
hastily  acquainted  with  the  posture  of  affairs.  At  first  he  could 
scarcely  comprehend  the  situation.  It  was  sudden  and  unex- 
pected. He  swore  that  all  should  be  killed,  Quantrill  and  the 

others  together,  but  with  the 
aid  of  his  wife,  the  son  was 
able  to  bring  him  to  acquiesce 
in  the  agreements  which  had 
been  entered  into.  Quantrill 
and  his  men  arrived  about 
seven  o'clock — at  that  sea- 
son, long  after  darkness  had 
Front  View  Walker  House  set  in.  Morrison  was  left  a 

guard  on  the  porch.  Dean  and  perhaps  others  were  stationed 
in  the  yard  near  the  porch.  Quantrill  had  desired  all  to  come 
into  the  house  with  him,  but  this  the  men  would  not  -agree  to, 
and  he,  Lipsey,  and  Ball  went  into  the  house.  After  a  brief 
greeting  Ball  said  he  might  as  well  state  their  business  at  once, 
and  then  he  told  Walker  that  they  had  come  to  take  his  slaves  to 
Kansas;  that  they  would  also  take  his  horses  and  mules;  that 
they  would  take  what  money  there  was  in  the  house.  Walker 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID 


157 


asked  Ball  if  he  had  talked  with  the  slaves  and  was  told  that  the 
slaves  had  been  consulted.  Walker  told  him  to  go  and  get  them, 
but  that  if  any  of  them  objected  to  going  to  Kansas  they  were 
to  be  left  at  home  —  that  he  did  not  see  any  good  reason  why 
those  who  did  not  wish  to  go  should  be  compelled  to  leave  him. 
He  also  believed  that  if  his  slaves  were  taken  he  should  be  al- 
lowed to  retain  his  money  and  live-stock.  Quantrill  then  told 


I 


1 


1  1 


o  *•  c. 


V 


••Bl.f<rVt.»     VvU.  1 


Vn.uvi.3Lt 


TXT 


ot 


AATo-IKe 


H.e>  U  S  fc 


Ball  to  go  out  and  gather  up  the  slaves  —  that  he  would  remain 
in  the  house  and  "take  care  of  the  old  folks,"  intending  that 
Ball  should  understand  that  he  would  guard  Walker  and  his 
wife.  As  no  other  persons  had  been  seen  by  the  robbers,  Ball 
must  have  believed  there  were  no  other  persons  at  the  house  or 
about  the  farm.  Quantrill  remained  with  Walker  and  his  fam- 
ily, and  Ball  and  his  companion  opened  the  door  and  stepped 
out  upon  the  porch. 


158          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

The  night  had  changed  —  outrider  and  precursor  of  doom. 
It  was  now  intensely  dark.  Ghostly  clouds  scudded  across  the 
leaden  sky.  Dashes  of  rain  and  sleet  beat  upon  the  earth  and 
rattled  against  the  narrow  panes  and  boarded  walls  of  the  old 
farmhouse.  A  moaning  wind  had  risen  and  now  sighed  and 
wailed  through  the  crevices  and  about  the  angles  of  the  rambling 
homestead.  A  fitful  roar  came  from  the  wind-shaken  forest. 
The  flickering  yellow  light  which  streamed  from  the  open  door 
fell  upon  the  Jayhawkers,  showing  those  along  the  yard-border 
but  dimly,  and  for  a  moment  lighting  up  the  anxious,  eager  faces 
of  two  or  three  timid,  skulking  negro  slaves.  This  scene  con- 
tinued for  only  an  instant.  Those  lying  in  wait  saw  in  it  their 
time  for  action.  From  the  door  of  the  harness-room  and  from 
behind  the  loom  there  came  an  irregular,  dull,  dead  roar  ac- 
companied by  sheets  of  lurid  flame.  Morrison  fell  dead.  Lipsey 
fell  from  the  porch  with  a  charge  of  balls  in  his  thigh.  Ball, 
unscathed,  leaped  from  the  porch  and  fired  his  pistol  at  random. 
A  second  volley  was  fired  into  the  darkness  in  the  hope  of  find- 
ing those  on  the  outskirts.  Then  rose  upon  the  sobbing  wind 
the  wild  cry  of  distress  as  Lipsey  entreated  Ball  to  bear  him 
from  danger. 

Ball  returned  and  caught  up  Lipsey,  taking  him  to  the 
point  where  the  wagon  had  been  stationed.  But  no  wagon  was 
there.  A  charge  of  buckshot  had  struck  one  of  Dean's  feet. 
That  redoubtable  slave-stealer  tarried  for  nothing  more.  He 
hastily  hobbled  to  the  wagon,  clambered  in,  and,  waiting  for  no 
one,  fled  at  a  lumbering  gallop  in  the  direction  of  the  sheltering 
walls  of  Lawrence,  oh  so  far  away!  Southwick  pursued  the 
panic-stricken  and  fleeing  Dean,  to  find  means  of  escape  in  the 
Kansas-bound  vehicle.  Ball,  carrying  Lipsey,  went,  he  knew  not 
whither.  It  was  enough  to  know  that  he  was  leaving  the  house 
of  "Walker  and  the  scene  of  black  treachery.  He  arrived  in  a 
woods  about  a  mile  north  of  Walker's  house,  but  not  on  the 
Walker  farm.  In  a  secluded  thicket  which  he  discovered  there 
he  stopped  and  passed  the  night  with  his  wounded  companion 
as  best  he  could.  No  doubt  he  recalled  with  bitterness  the  warn- 
ings and  parting  prediction  of  Captain  Ely  Snyder  which  he 
had  so  foolishly  scorned  a  few  days  before. 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  159 

It  does  not  appear  that  Walker  or  his  neighbors  made  any 
effort  to  trail  those  whom  they  had  not  killed.  They  may  have 
supposed  all  the  survivors  had  escaped  in  the  wagon.  The  night 
was  wild,  the  robbers  were  defeated,  and  a  precious  rogue  had 
been  recruited  for  the  slavery  side  —  one  destined  to  bring  fire 
and  sword  and  woe  upon  the  land.  The  dead  slave-stealer  was 
stretched  flat  on  his  back  on  the  floor  of  the  harness-room.  His 
prowess  and  ferocity  were  descanted  upon  by  Quantrill  in  a 
way  strangely  at  variance  with  the  youthful  look  on  the  Quaker 
face  of  him  who  should  now  raid  again  nevermore.  He  had  laid 
his  life  on  the  altar  of  human  liberty,  the  victim  of  delusion, 
knavery,  treachery,  and  nothing  did  he  heed  of  the  slanders  of 
him  he  had  counted  friend  but  an  hour  ago.6 

6  The  author  has  sought  every  source  of  information  on  what  oc- 
curred at  the  house  of  Morgan  Walker.  He  has  interviewed  many  of  the 
old  citizens  of  Jackson  county.  The  text  is  a  faithful  account  of  what 
could  be  obtained.  Most  of  it  is  sustained  by  written  evidence,  the  best 
of  which  is  found  in  two  letters  from  Andrew  J.  Walker  to  W.  W.  Scott, 
now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  as  are  others  of  his  letters.  He  moved 
from  Jackson  county  to  St.  Glair  county,  Mo.,  his  postoffice  there  having 
been  Lebeck.  He  moved  from  that  point  to  Texas,  where  he  died  some 
years  since.  Under  date  of  February  3,  1883,  he  writes: 

I  think  I  know  as  much  about  Quantrill  as  any  man  living  and  am 
the  only  man  living  who  can  give  his  coming  into  Missouri  and  commencing 
the  War.  .  .  .  There  were  only  three  men  with  Quantrill.  I  can't  give 
the  exact  date  when  they  came  to  my  father's  house,  but  it  was  about  the 
middle  of  December,  1860.  The  men  were  all  killed,  none  got  away,  their 
names  were  Charley  Ball,  Charley  Southwick  and  I  have  forgotten  the 
others  name.  My  Mother  and  Father  are  both  dead.  Quantrill  had  a  long 
neck,  small  Eoman  nose,  rather  slim  face,  blue  eyes  and  never  wore  long 
hair.  .  .  .  The  day  they  came  my  father  was  gone  to  Independence. 
Quantrill  met  him  and  asked  him  the  way  to  Morgan  Walker's.  He  told 
him  he  was  the  man.  Quantrill  then  asked  him  if  his  sons  were  at  home, 
he  told  him  he  guessed  they  were.  He  accordingly  came  to  my  house,  I 
lived  a  quarter  of  a  mile  from  my  fathers  and  told  me  his  story,  that  there 
were  some  men  from  Kansas  coming  to  rob  my  father  that  night,  that  they 
were  living  in  the  brush  and  had  sent  him  to  reconnoiter  the  premises.  He 
told  me  all  their  plans  and  left  it  to  me  to  do  as  I  pleased.  I  went  and 
got  four  men  each  with  a  double  barrel  shot  gun  well  loaded  with  buck 
shot.  There  was  a  long  porch  in  front  of  the  house  with  a  little  room  at 
one  end.  My  mother  had  a  loom  in  the  same  end  of  the  porch  as  this  little 
room.  I  put  three  of  my  men  in  this  little  room  and  myself  and  one  man 
got  behind  the  loom  and  the  understanding  was  to  let  the  men  go  into  the 
house  My  father  got  home  about  ten  minutes  before  they  came.  Quan- 
trill and  two  others  went  into  the  house  and  one  man  stood  sentinel.  Our 
understanding  was  to  let  them  come  and  Ball  told  my  father  they  had 
as  well  tell  their  business.  They  told  my  father  they  were  going  to  take 


his  slaves,  he  had  thirty  two  slaves.  They  told  him  they  would  take  his 
slaves,  his  horses,  his  mules  and  his  money.  There  were  about  100  horses 
and  mules.  My  father  asked  Ball  if  he  had  talked  with  the  negroes  and 
whether  they  wanted  to  go  or  not.  He  said  he  had,  he  told  him  to  go  and 
get  them  then,  but  that  if  there  were  any  that  did  not  want  to  go  to  let 
them  stay.  Quantrill  said  he  would  take  care  of  the  old  folks  and  they  could 
go  and  get  the  negroes.  They  came  out  and  we  fired  on  them,  one  of  my 
men  fired  too  soon.  One  man  was  killed  dead  on  the  porch  and  another 
wounded  in  the  thigh,  Ball  got  away  without  a  scratch.  The  night  was 
very  dark. 

In  his  letter  dated  February  22,  1883,  Walker  says: 
I  had  never  met  Quantrill  before  he  made  the  raid  on  my  fathers 
house.     It  was  about  eleven  o'clock  in  the  morning  when  Quantrill  came 
to  my  house,  and  to  my  fathers  house  about  seven  o'clock  at  night.     South- 
wick  stood  guard.     We  supposed  they  had  made  their  escape. 

Andrew  J.  Walker  also  made  a  statement  at  a  reunion  of  Quantrill  'a 
men  held  at  Blue  Springs,  May  11,  1888,  which  was  published  in  the 
Kansas  City  Journal  the  following  day.  This  statement  does  not  agree 
exactly  with  his  letters,  but  this  may  be  the  fault  of  the  reporter.  In  the 
statement  he  says: 

I  first  saw  Quantrill  in  the  latter  part  of  November,  1860.  He  came 
upon  the  farm  of  my  father,  Morgan  Walker,  which  consisted  of  1,900 
acres  and  was  located  three  miles  northeast  of  Blue  Springs,  one  afternoon 
in  that  month.  My  father  had  26  niggers,  and  100  horses  and  mules;  he 
also  had  about  $2000  in  the  house.  I  was  in  the  field  shucking  corn  at 
the  time.  He  told  my  father  that  he  was  with  a  party  of  three  men  who 
had  come  over  from  Kansas  to  rob  us  of  our  money,  horses  and  mules,  and 
run  off  our  niggers.  He  said  he  would  aid  us  in  thwarting  their  design. 
We  got  several  men  together  between  that  time  and  dark.  I  got  down 
behind  a  loom,  and  my  father,  John  Tatum,  Lee  Coger,  and  D.  C.  Williams 
were  hidden  in  the  harness  room  and  other  parts  of  the  house.  We  had  it 
all  arranged  that  when  the  robbers  came  to  the  door  a  lighted  candle  was 
to  be  placed  in  one  of  the  windows.  That  was  the  signal  for  the  fun  to 
begin.  Quantrill,  Charles  Southwick,  Charles  Ball,  and  Lipsey  came  upon 
the  porch.  Quantrill  stepped  inside  and  said:  "We  have  come  to  take 
your  niggers  with  us  to  Kansas.  We  also  want  your  bosses  and  mules  and 
what  money  you  have  in  the  house."  My  father  replied  that  if  his  niggers 
wanted  to  go  to  Kansas  they  were  at  liberty  to  do  so,  but  he  did  not  see 
any  reason  why  those  who  did  not  want  to  go  should  be  compelled  to  leave 
him,  and  he  thought  he  ought  to  have  his  stock  and  money  left 
him.  The  other  three  were  standing  outside  the  door,  which  was  then 
shut;  a  candle  was  put  in  the  window  and  the  other  lights  turned  out. 
We  then  opened  fire  on  the  three  companions  of  Quantrill.  Lipsey  was 
killed,  but  Southwick  and  Ball  got  away.  Southwick  was  wounded,  how- 
ever. 

It  will  be  observed  that  in  this  account,  Andrew  J.  Walker  has  his 
father  in  the  harness-room  and  also  in  the  main  room  of  the  house  talking 
to  Quantrill,  an  impossibility.  In  this  statement  there  was  careless  report- 
ing or  reckless  talk.  His  letters  are  by  far  the  best  authority. 

Dean  has  left  accounts  of  the  Morgan  Walker  raid.  They  are  not 
the  whole  truth,  for  he  denies  his  own  participation  in  it,  and  it  is  known 
that  he  was  a  late  arrival  on  the  ground  with  a  wagon,  and  that  possibly 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  161 

he  was  accompanied  by  Southwick.  Dean's  accounts  are  set  out  here.  In 
a  letter  to  Colonel  Samuel  Walker,  dated  at  Waukon,  Allamakee  county, 
Iowa,  July  31,  1879,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  he  says: 

Those  young  men  that  he  betrayed  to  their  death  at  Morgan  Walkers, 
were,  as  I  knew  them  Gods  noblemen,  the  sons  of  Quakers,  full  of  that 
spirit  of  Liberty  that  cheerfully  gave  such  a  sacrifice  soon  after.  They 
in  no  sense  as  7  knew  them,  loved  the  conflict,  but  was  filled  with  love 
for  the  cause  of  Liberty  deep  in  their  natures,  abhorred  the  dark  and 
damning  stain  upon  the  Escuthion  of  America,  had  no  real  love  for  the 
work  of  ' '  abrasion ' '  that  must  ' '  rub  it  off "  but  would  not  hold  aloof 
from  such  "work"  They  were  Iowa  men.  their  names  were  Charles  Ball, 
Edwin  Morrison,  Harry  Lipsey  I  was  not  one  of  the  party,  but  the  par- 
ticulars of  the  affair,  as  I  will  give  you,  you  can  rely  upon  as  nothing 
but  the  truth.  Need  I  tell  you  that  I  did  not  rest  or  stop  untill  I  had 
learned  the  facts.  Need  I  tell  you  that  I  had  "blood  in  my  eye"  and  at 
that  time  thought  that  there  was  such  a  thing  as  "retributive  justice"  and 
that  it  was  good 

The  party  that  left  Osawatomie  for  Walkers  numbered  four  men.  the 
three  Iowa  men  above  given  and  Quantrill.  I  was  there  at  the  time  on 
"business"  and  had  the  confidence  and  love  of  these  Iowa  men  The 
evening  before  they  left  I  had  a  long  and  serious  talk  on  ' '  business ' ' 
matters  with  Chas  Ball  the  acknowledged  leader  of  the  party.  We  freely 
talked  about  Quantrell,  his  "fitness"  for  the  work  Ball  thought  he 
might  do,  and  seemed  to  have  more  confidence  than  I  in  his  frequent  declara- 
tions that  all  he  wanted  was  a  chance  to  prove  by  "work"  his  honesty. 
My  counsil  to  Ball  was  caution.  Quick,  sharp,  decisive  action,  give  every 
man  his  place  and  duty  and  see  that  they  kept  their  place  and  done  their 
duty,  with  only  a  very  limited  measure  of  confidence  in  Quantrill,  untill 
he  had  proved  worthy.  I  did  not  believe  at  that  time  that  Quantrill  knew 
the  destination  of  the  party 

The  four,  left  O'e,  supplied  with  necessary  blankets,  provisions,  arms, 
spy  glass  &c  &c  and  made  a  hasty  camp  near  Walkers  in  the  woods,  and 
proceeded  to  look  the  ground  over,  and  arrange  the  plan  of  attack,  which 
was  decided  upon  and  to  be  made  just  at  dusk  of  evening.  Quantrell 
made  a  visit  to  the  house  and  gave  Walker  the  notice  of  the  intended  raid 
that  evening,  and  arranged  how  he  should  be  known,  by  moving  away  from 
the  party,  to  the  oblique,  while  approaching  the  house.  Walker  arranged 
a  reception  and  when  the  party  approached  the  house,  Quantrill  moved 
away  as  arranged.  Ball  suspecting  something,  spoke  sharp  to  him  and 
when  Walkers  volley  came  into  the  party  from  the  house,  Ball  and  Quan- 
trell exchanged  shots,  with  no  harm  to  either  in  the  dusk  of  the  evening. 
Ed  Morrison  was  instantly  killed  and  was  the  only  one  of  the  three  that 
could  be  found  that  night. 

In  the  Collection  of  the  author  there  is  a  statement  which  has  been 
typewritten  by  the  Kansas  State  Historical  Society  from  an  original, 
perhaps  in  the  library  of  the  Society.  It  was  made  to  W.  W.  Scott  in 
reply  to  interrogatories.  In  it  he  describes  the  Morgan  Walker  raid,  and 
the  following  is  taken  from  that  statement: 

The  party  that  made  that  attempt  left  Osawatomie  about  the  middle 
of  December,  1860,  numbering  four  persons,  three  Iowa  young  men  and 
Quantrill.  The  three  Iowa  young  men  were  sons  of  Quakers  and  loved  the 
cause  of  liberty,  not  the  combat  which  must  ever  exist  between  the  despot- 
ism that  demands  servitude  without  just  reward,  and  the  spirit  of  free- 
11 


162          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

dom,  but  they  loved  liberty,  and  their  lives  were  devoted  to  the  attempt 
to  make  it  universal.  The  oldest  of  the  three,  and  acknowledged  leader, 
was  Charley  Ball;  the  next  Ed  and  Harry,  while  Quantrill  went  along  as 
helper.  Before  starting  Charley  Ball  and  myself  had  a  long  and  serious 
talk  about  the  trustworthiness  of  Quantrill.  I  did  not  endorse  or  recom- 
mend but  left  everything  to  Ball,  he  promising  to  be  very  watchful  and 
guarded,  and  not  too  confiding  in  him.  The  party  started  on  foot,  well 
armed  with  revolvers,  and  well  supplied  with  blankets  and  provisions. 
They  arrived  safely  and  camped  very  near  Walker's  in  the  timber,  waiting 
for  the  dusk  of  evening.  Quantrill  left  the  camp  upon  some  excuse  and 
notified  Walker  of  the  intended  raid  and  how  he  would  dispose  of  himself 
by  stepping  on  one  side  when  the  party  advanced  so  as  not  to  be  shot. 
Walker  called  in  the  neighbors  and  when  the  party  was  advancing  Quan- 
trill moved  away  from  them  to  the  left  rear  and  they  were  about  to  shoot 
him,  fearing  his  movement  spoke  treachery,  when  the  volley  came  from  the 
house  into  them,  and  Quantrill  and  Ball  exchanged  shots.  The  volley  killed 
Ed  and  badly  wounded  Harry,  but  when  Walker  searched  the  ground  he 
could  find  only  the  dead  Ed. 

Dean  either  never  knew  what  occurred  at  the  house  or  made  these 
erroneous  statements  about  the  matter.  That  he  was  present  there  is  no 
doubt.  But  he  may  have  been  where  he  could  not  see  what  occurred  at 
the  porch  or  the  house  —  in  the  house.  His  theory  in  his  accounts  is  that 
the  men  never  entered  the  house,  but  were  killed  as  they  approached  it. 
His  statement  as  to  the  leadership  is  balderdash.  Quantrill  was  the  leader, 
and  the  leader  with  Dean's  knowledge  and  demand.  The  idea  that  Quan- 
trill should  not  know  the  destination  or  object  of  the  expedition,  when 
Stewart  said  Quantrill  had  been  urging  him  to  go  to  Walker's  all  summer! 
Captain  Snyder  knew  whom  the  leader  was  and  made  every  effort  to 
prevent  the  Quaker  boys  from  going  with  Quantrill. 

Dean  made  his  statements  to  try  to  shift  and  evade  responsibility. 
Captain  Stewart  afterwards  told  H.  S.  Clarke  that  Dean  was  in  the  raid 
to  Morgan  Walker's  and  there  got  the  bullet  in  his  heel,  and  that  with 
his  blundering  in  a  matter  for  which  he  was  not  fitted,  it  was  a  wonder 
that  he  was  not  killed. 

Southwick  told  a  story  not  greatly  different  from  that  told  by  Dean. 
The  improbable  part  of  his  story  is  that  which  takes  him  back  to  Walker's 
in  a  few  days  in  the  capacity  of  a  spy.  It  is  most  likely  that  he  had 
slipped  away  from  Osawatomie  for  a  day  or  two  at  the  instance  of  Dean, 
and  had  gone  with  that  heroic  abolitionist  in  a  wagon  to  aid  the  others 
at  Morgan  Walker 's.  There  he  was  scared  to  death  —  almost.  His  mind 
was  a  wreck  ever  after.  If  there  was  any  place  in  all  the  world  he  never 
could  have  been  forced  or  cajoled  into  visiting  that  place  was  the  house 
of  Morgan  Walker  after  the  raid;  but  he  says  he  went  back  there  and  had 
dinner.  He  knew  Quantrill  was  there.  Is  his  story  probable? 

Major  John  N.  Edwards,  in  his  efforts  to  deify  Quantrill,  in  splendid 
rhetoric,  in  his  Noted  Guerillas,  sheds  many  tears  and  wastes  much  genuine 
sympathy  for  a  Quantrill  who  never  lived  —  a  poor,  honest,  injured,  imposed- 
upon,  outraged,  innocent,  guileless  Maryland  boy  who  fell  victim  to  the 
rough  mercies  of  the  leading  Free-State  men!  Excuse  can  be  made  for  Major 


163 

Edwards,  in  that  he  did  not  know  the  truth  about  Quantrill  —  none  of  the 
Missourians  knew  it.  Quantrill  told  them  a  story  wholly  false.  Major 
Edwards  secured  most  of  his  information  from  Frank  and  Jesse  James 
while  they  were  hiding  from  justice  in  Louisiana.  They  wrote  letters  to 
him  all  of  one  summer.  They  were  the  poorest  authority  for  historical 
statements  on  earth,  the  most  wretched  imaginable  in  a  matter  of  this 
kind.  His  account  cf  the  Morgan  Walker  raid  is  as  follows: 

There  came  also  from  the  East  about  this  time  some  sort  of  a  disease 
known  as  the  club  mania.  Those  afflicted  with  it  —  and  it  attacked  well 
nigh  the  entire  population  —  had  a  hot  fever  described  as  the  enrollment 
fever.  Organizations  of  all  sorts  sprang  up  —  Free  soil  Clubs,  Avengers, 
Men  of  Equal  Rights,  Sons  of  Liberty,  John  Brown's  Body  Guard,  Destroy- 
ing Angels,  Lane 's  Loyal  Leaguers,  and  what  not  —  and  every  one  made 
haste  to  get  his  name  signed  to  both  constitution  and  by-laws.  Lawrence 
especially  affected  the  Liberator  Club,  whose  undivided  mission  was  to  find 
freedom  for  all  the  slaves  in  Missouri.  Quantrell  took  its  latitude  and 
longitude  with  the  calm,  cold  eyes  of  a  political  philosopher  and  joined 
it  among  the  first.  As  it  well  might  have  been,  he  soon  became  its  vitaliz- 
ing influence  and  its  master.  The  immense  energy  of  the  man  —  making 
fertile  with  resources  a  mind  bent  to  the  accomplishment  of  a  certain  fixed 
purpose  —  suggested  at  once  to  the  club  the  necessity  of  practical  work  if 
it  meant  to  make  any  negroes  free  or  punish  any  slave-holders.  He 
knew  how  an  entire  family  of  negroes  might  be  rescued.  The  risk  was  not 
much.  The  distance  was  not  great.  The  time  was  opportune.  How  many 
would  volunteer  for  the  enterprise?  At  first  the  Club  argued  indirectly 
that  it  was  a  Club  sentimental  —  not  a  Club  militant.  It  would  pray 
devoutly  for  the  liberation  of  all  the  slaves  in  the  world,  but  it  would  not 
fight  for  them.  What  profit  would  the  individual  members  receive  if,  after 
gaining  all  Africa,  they  lost  their  own  scalps?  Quantrell  persevered,  how- 
ever, and  finally  induced  seven  of  the  Liberators  to  co-operate  with  him. 
His  plan  was  to  enter  Jackson  county,  Missouri,  with  three  days'  cooked 
rations,  and  ride  the  first  night  to  within  striking  distance  of  the  premises 
it  was  intended  to  plunder.  There  —  hidden  completely  in  the  brush  and 
vigilant  without  being  seen  or  heard  —  wait  again  for  the  darkness  of  the 
second  night.  This  delay  of  a  day  would  also  enable  the  horses  to  get  a 
good  rest  and  the  negroes  to  prepare  for  their  hurried  journey.  After- 
wards a  bold  push  and  a  steady  gallop  must  bring  them  all  back  safe  to 
the  harbor  of  Lawrence.  Perhaps  the  plan  really  was  a  daring  one,  and 
the  execution  extremely  dangerous;  but  seven  Liberators  out  of  eighty-four 
volunteered  to  accompany  Quantrell,  and  in  a  week  everything  was  ready 
for  the  enterprise.  .  .  . 

Between  the  time  the  Liberators  had  made  every  preparation  for  the 
foray  and  the  time  the  eight  men  actually  started  for  Morgan  Walker's 
house,  there  was  the  space  of  a  week.  Afterwards  those  most  interested 
remembered  that  Quantrell  had  not  been  seen  during  all  that  period  either 
in  Lawrence  or  at  the  headquarters  of  his  regiment. 

Everything  opened  auspiciously.  Well  mounted  and  armed,  the  little 
detachment  left  Lawrence  quietly,  rode  two  by  two  and  far  apart,  until 
the  point  of  the  first  rendezvous  was  reached  —  a  clump  of  timber  at  a 
ford  on  Indian  Creek.  It  was  the  evening  of  the  second  day  when  they 
arrived,  and  they  tarried  long  enough  to  rest  their  horses  and  eat  a  hearty 
supper.  Before  daylight  the  next  morning  the  entire  party  were  hidden 
in  some  heavy  timber  two  miles  to  the  west  of  Walker's  house.  From  this 
safe  retreat  none  of  them  stirred  except  Quantrell.  Several  times  during 
the  day,  however,  he  went  backwards  and  forwards  ostensibly  to  the  fields 


164          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

where  the  negroes  were  at  work,  and  whenever  he  returned  he  always 
brought  something  either  for  the  horses  or  the  men  to  eat. 

Morgan  Walker  had  two  sons  —  true  scions  of  the  same  stock  —  and 
before  it  was  yet  night  these  two  boys  and  also  the  father  might  have 
been  seen  cleaning  up  and  putting  in  excellent  order  their  double-barrel 
shot-guns.  A  little  later  three  neighbors,  likewise  carrying  double-barrel 
shot-guns,  rode  up  to  the  house,  dismounted,  and  entered  in.  Quantrell, 
who  brought  note  of  many  other  things  to  his  comrades,  brought  no  note 
of  this.  If  he  saw  it  he  made  no  sign. 

The  night  was  dark.  It  had  rained  a  little  during  the  day,  and  the 
most  of  the  light  of  the  stars  had  been  put  out  by  the  clouds,  when  Quantrell 
arranged  his  men  for  the  dangerous  venture.  They  were  to  proceed  first 
to  the  house,  gain  possession  of  it,  capture  the  male  members  of  the  family, 
put  them  under  guard,  assemble  the  negroes,  bid  them  hitch  up  all  the 
wagons  and  teams  possible,  and  then  make  a  rapid  gallop  for  Kansas. 

Fifty  yards  from  the  main  gate  the  eight  men  dismounted  and  fas- 
tened their  horses.  Arms  were  looked  to,  and  the  stealthy  march  to  the 
house  began.  Quantrell  led.  He  was  very  cool,  and  seemed  to  see  every- 
thing. The  balance  of  the  marauders  had  their  revolvers  in  their  hands; 
his  were  in  his  belt.  Not  a  dog  barked.  If  any  there  had  been  aught 
save  city  bred,  this,  together  with  the  ominous  silence,  would  have  de- 
manded a  reeonnoissance.  None  heeded  the  surroundings,  however,  and 
Quantrell  knocked  loudly  and  boldly  at  the  oaken  panels  of  Morgan  Walk- 
er's door.  No  answer.  He  knocked  again  and  stood  perceptibly  to  one 
side.  Suddenly,  and  as  though  it  had  neither  bolts  nor  bars,  locks,  nor 
hinges,  the  door  flared  open  and  Quantrell  leaped  into  the  hall  with  a 
bound  like  a  red  deer.  'Twas  best  so.  A  livid  sheet  of  flame  burst  out 
from  the  darkness  where  he  had  disappeared  —  as  though  an  explosion  had 
happened  there  —  followed  by  another  as  the  second  barrels  of  the  guns 
were  discharged,  and  the  tragedy  was  over.  Six  fell  where  they  stood, 
riddled  with  buck-shot.  One  staggered  to  the  garden,  bleeding  fearfully, 
and  died  there.  The  seventh,  hard  hit  and  unable  to  mount  his  horse, 
dragged  his  crippled  limbs  to  a  patch  of  timber  and  waited  for  the  dawn. 
They  tracked  him  by  his  blood  upon  the  leaves  and  found  him  early. 
Would  he  surrender?  No!  Another  volley,  and  the  last  Liberator  was 
liberated.  Walker  and  his  two  sons,  assisted  by  three  of  his  stalwart  and 
obliging  neighbors,  had  done  a  clean  night's  work  and  a  righteous  one. 
Those  who  had  taken  the  sword  had  perished  by  it. 

The  errors  in  the  foregoing  quotation  are  many,  glaring,  and  plain 
to  be  seen.  The  party  did  not  go  directly  from  Lawrence,  but  indirectly, 
going  first  to  Osawatomie.  It  was  designed  to  go  to  the  Cherokee  Nation, 
not  to  Morgan  Walker's,  when  it  left  Lawrence.  There  was  no  such  club 
or  organization  as  Major  Edwards  describes.  The  men  were  not  mounted, 
but  went  to  Walker's  on  foot.  Four  only  left  Osawatomie  to  go  on  the 
foray,  and  these  were  reinforced  by  Dean  and  perhaps  another,  possibly 
Southwick.  Andrew  J.  Walker  did  not  know  of  this  reinforcement,  for  it 
arrived  late  —  after  Quantrill  had  left  the  house.  Perhaps  if  Quantrill  had 
known  of  the  presence  of  this  reinforcement  he  would  not  have  acquainted 
Walker  with  the  fact,  for  it  might  have  deterred  Walker  from  making  a 
stand  against  the  raiders.  The  manner  of  approaching  the  house  is  erron- 
eously stated,  and  the  number  of  men  killed  too  many  by  more  than  half. 
The  men  were  shot,  not  from  the  door  of  the  house,  but  from  the  harness- 
room  and  behind  the  loom. 


THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  165 

It  is  a  great  pity  that  so  beautiful  a  description  as  that  written  by 
Major  Edwards  should  have  so  little  foundation  in  the  facts  as  they  occurred. 

Morgan  Townley  Mattox,  one  of  Quantrill's  men,  told  the  author,  at 
Bartlesville,  Oklahoma,  April  29,  1909,  that  Dr.  Riley  Slaughter,  the  di- 
vorced husband  of  Anna  Walker,  was  at  the  house  of  Morgan  Walker  the 
night  that  Quantrill  betrayed  his  companions  to  death.  Slaughter  told 
Mattox  so,  and  described  the  whole  affair.  He  was  the  fourth  man  in  the 
squad  raised  to  kill  the  Jayhawkers.  Mattox  says  it  was  generally  known 
in  Missouri  that  Quantrill  killed  his  companions.  His  proposition  to  Walker 
was  that  he  must  kill  the  Kansans  himself  —  that  he  would  not  have 
revenge  otherwise,  and  that  he  would  not  ask  the  Walkers  to  take  the 
burden  of  killing  these  men. 

May  15,  1906,  at  Independence,  Mo.,  "Babe"  Hudspeth  told  the 
author  that  Quantrill  sometimes  boasted  of  having  killed  the  wounded  man 
at  Morgan  Walker's.  He  said  the  other  ran  and  Morgan  Walker  shot 
him  in  the  head  with  a  musket. 

During  the  war,  Cyrus  Leland,  Jr.,  was  often  in  the  Walker  neigh- 
borhood, and  the  people  told  him  Quantrill  killed  his  companions. 

A  man  named  Campbell  lived  near  Walker.  He  was  one  of  the  men 
who  went  with  Quantrill  and  Walker  to  the  brush  to  kill  Ball  and  Lipsey. 
He  said  Ball  was  wounded  and  fell  helpless.  Lipsey  was  already  helpless. 
Quantrill  shot  both  of  them  while  they  were  begging  for  their  lives. 
Campbell  had  a  claim  in  Douglas  county,  Kansas,  near  Fort  Saunders, 
which  he  kept  until  after  the  war  and  lived  on  it  part  of  the  time.  It  was 
while  living  there  that  he  told  the  editor  of  the  Lawrence  Tribune  of 
Quantrill's  killing  his  helpless  companions. 

In  a  letter  of  C.  F.  (Fletch)  Taylor  in  the  Collection  of  the  author 
it  is  said: 

He  came  with  the  men  for  the  purpose  of  robbing  Walker  and  stealing 
slaves,  when  Quantrill  betrayed  them,  and  all  were  killed,  one  instantly, 
and  the  other  two  next  day.  One  was  killed  by  Quantrill,  who  ran  up  to 
him  and  shot  him  dead,  so  we  only  had  his  story  for  the  cause,  which  was 
so  far  as  I  could  find  out  then,  and  even  to  this  day  I  know  of  no  other 
cause. 


CHAPTER  XI 

QUANTRILL    THE    FORSWORN  —  WHAT    HE    TOLD    THE    MISSOURIANS 

IT  WAS  necessary  that  Quantrill  should  give  to  the  people  of 
Missouri  some  excuse  for  his  treachery.  They  were  grateful 
for  his  aid  in  preventing  robbery,  but  they  could  not  forget 
that  he  came  among  them  and  made  himself  known  to  them  as 
a  member  of  a  band  of  marauders  who  stole  into  Missouri  to 
despoil  Morgan  Walker  not  alone  of  slaves,  but  of  horses,  mules, 
and  money.  There  were  many  —  some  in  Missouri  —  who  could 
have  forgiven  the  raid  had  it  been  for  the  sole  purpose  of  restor- 
ing liberty  to  enslaved  men  and  women,  but  they  saw  neither 
unselfish  sacrifice  nor  devotion  to  high  ideals  when  horses,  mules, 
and  money  were  demanded  as  booty.  Quantrill  knew  all  this 
as  well  as  any  man  in  the  world,  and  he  had  fortified  himself 
against  that  time  when  he  might  feel  a  rope  about  his  neck  or 
gaze  into  the  muzzle  of  a  navy  pistol.  And  this  is  the  story  he 
told  the  Missourians : 

That  he  was  born  at  Hagerstown,  Maryland ;  that  he  had  an 
elder  brother ;  that  his  brother  lived  in  Kansas  and  sent  for  him 
to  come  on  and  go  with  him  to  California ;  that  he  had  come  out 
as  requested ;  that  they  had  outfitted,  each  with  a  wagon  and  four 
fine  mules,  provisions  for  the  way  and  a  free  negro  to  cook  and 
tend  camp  and  mules;  that  they  had  started  out  over  the  Old 
Santa  Fe  Trail ;  that  they  had  reached  the  Cottonwood  and  there 
camped  one  night;  that  in  the  night  James  Montgomery  and  a 
body  of  Jayhawkers  numbering  thirty,  came  upon  them,  slew  his 
brother,  wounded  him  in  the  left  leg  and  breast,  robbed  him  and 
the  dead  body  of  his  brother,  took  teams,  wagons,  and  supplies, 
as  well  as  the  negro,  and  left  him  naked,  starving,  and  helpless 
on  the  plain;  that  he  watched  by  his  brother's  dead  body,  de- 
fending it  from  buzzards  by  day  and  from  wolves  by  night ;  that 
he  was  dying  from  thirst  and  starvation  when  an  old  Shawnee 
Indian  named  Golightly  Spiebuck  who  lived  near  Leavenworth 


WHAT  HE  TOLD  THE  MISSOURIANS  167 

(the  Shawnees  lived  south  of  the  Kansas  river  and  nowhere  near 
Leaven  worth)  came  along  and  buried  his  brother  and  carried 
him  to  his  home  and  nursed  him  back  to  health;  that,  vowing 
vengeance  against  the  Kansas  people,  he  had  joined  some  mili- 
tary organization  (usually  said  to  have  been  one  commanded  by 
James  H.  Lane  —  the  preposterous  idea  of  joining  Lane's  com- 
mand to  have  an  opportunity  to  take  vengeance  on  Montgom- 
ery's men  seems  not  to  have  struck  the  Missourians) ;  that  he 
had  found  in  his  company  the  men  who  had  murdered  his 
brother  and  wounded  himself;  that  they  were  his  companions 
in  arms  under  Lane  (how  they  came  to  be  under  Montgomery 
when  they  found  him  on  the  Cotton  wood  is  not  explained) ;  that 
from  time  to  time  he  had  slain  man  after  man  of  those  who  had 
attacked  him  and  killed  his  brother  until  now  only  those  with 
him  at  Morgan  Walker's  were  left;  that  in  the  death  of  those 
his  vengeance  would  be  completely  glutted  and  his  thirst  for 
blood  satiated.1 


i  Quantrill  may  or  may  not  have  gone  into  these  details  to  Andrew 
J.  Walker  when  making  arrangements  to  betray  his  comrades  to  death, 
but  he  told  the  main  part  of  the  story,  at  least.  In  a  letter  written  by 
Andrew  J.  Walker  to  W.  W.  Seott,  dated  Feb.  22,  1883,  now  in  the 
Collection  of  the  author,  Walker  says: 

Quantrill  had  been  living  in  Kansas  up  to  the  time  he  came  on  that 
slave  stealing  expedition.  His  statement  was  that  he  and  an  older  brother 
had  started  to  Pikes  Peak  in  Colorado,  with  a  four  mule  wagon,  a  negro 
man  and  equipments  for  mining  and  that  this  same  band  that  was  with 
him,  robbed  them  of  all  they  had,  killed  his  brother  and  he  himself  escaped 
wounded  through  the  leg.  After  he  got  well  he  went  and  joined  them 
under  the  name  of  Charley  Hart,  in  order  to  wreak  vengeance.  He  also 
stated  the  band  consisted  of  sixty  men,  headed  by  a  man  by  the  name  of 
Montgomery.  Their  headquarters  was  at  Osawatomie,  Kansas,  and  were 
to  get  one  hundred  dollars  for  every  negro  delivered  at  that  place.  He 
said  they  run  them  around  to  New  Orleans  and  there  sold  them. 

Captain  William  H.  Gregg,  formerly  deputy  sheriff  of  Jackson  county, 
Mo.,  served  under  Quantrill  until  about  January,  1864.  He  has  written  a 
long  account  of  his  services  for  the  author,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the 
author,  in  which  he  says: 

Quantrill  told  this  story  to  his  men.  I  was  born  in  Hagerstown, 
Maryland,  in  1836.  Me  and  my  older  brother,  a  negro  boy,  wagon  and 
team,  started  for  Pike's  Peak,  arriving  at  Lawrence,  Kansas,  then  but  a 
village.  We  stopped  to  make  some  purchases,  leaving  sometime  in  the 
afternoon,  camped  near  the  Kaw  Eiver,  where  sometime  in  the  night  we 
were  attacked  by  Montgomery's  band  of  Jayhawkers.  My  brother  was 
killed,  I  wounded  and  left  for  dead,  the  negro,  wagon  and  team,  with  our 
plunder  appropriated.  After  keeping  vigil  for  twenty-four  hours  amidst 


168          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BOEDER  WARS 

Quantrill's  holy  life  of  hardship  and  devotion  to  the  South 
(as  told  by  him)  grew  in  Missouri  with  the  lapse  of  time.  It, 
together  with  his  guerrilla  outrages  and  inhuman  massacres,  be- 
came a  deification.  His  fame  as  a  martyr  and  saint  in  Missouri 
reached  its  zenith  in  the  days  when  Major  John  N.  Edwards 
strove  so  gallantly  and  wrote  so  eloquently  for  the  press  of  that 
State.  Major  Edwards  believed  what  he  wrote,  for  he  was  an 
honest  man.  He  had  no  correct  information  upon  the  subject 
of  the  life  of  Quantrill  in  Kansas,  and  much  that  he  wrote  he 
obtained  from  Frank  and  Jesse  James  long  after  the  war  and 
when  they  were  in  hiding,  outlaws  for  highway  robbery  and 

the  hideous  bowlings  of  hundreds  of  coyotes,  becoming  almost  famished  for 
water,  I  managed  to  crawl  to  the  Kaw  River,  and  quench  my  thirst,  after 
which  I  espied  a  canoe  at  the  opposite  bank,  and  soon  after  an  Indian 
approached  the  canoe,  to  whom  I  halloed,  asking  him  to  come  over,  which 
he  did,  and,  after  hearing  my  story,  buried  my  dead  brother,  when  he  and 
his  wife  nursed  me  to  health. 

Soon  after  I  was  restored  to  health,  I  sought  Montgomery  and  joined 
his  band,  under  the  name  of  Charley  Hart.  I  had  not  been  with  Mont- 
gomery long  when  I  found  that  I  had  the  confidence  of  all  the  officers  and 
men.  I  then,  in  a  systematic  way,  obtained  the  names  of  all  the  men  who 
took  part  in  the  killing  of  my  brother,  &c.  I  had  joined  Montgomery  for 
the  purpose  of  getting  revenge,  managing  to  get  one  at  a  time  away  from 
camp.  I  never  allowed  one  to  get  back  alive,  until,  when  the  war  came 
on,  there  were  only  two  left. 

The  above  story  was  somewhat  shaken,  however,  when  a  woman 
purporting  to  be  Quantrill's  mother  together  with  a  Mr.  Scott,  both  from 
Canal  Dover,  O.,  appeared  in  Jackson  County,  Missouri,  about  1884,  both 
of  whom  told  the  same  story.  Mrs.  Quantrill  said,  My  son  William  had  no 
older  brother,  he  had  a  younger  brother  "Thompson."  William  was  my 
oldest  child,  hence  the  story  which  you  relate  cannot  be  true,  besides,  says 
she,  my  children  were  all  born  and  raised  at  Canal  Dover,  Ohio.  Mr.  Scott, 
who  claimed  to  be  a  bosom  friend  and  schoolmate  of  William  Clark  Quan- 
trill, voiced  what  Mrs.  Quantrill  said,  and  further  said  that  he  was  very 
much  surprised  at  the  course  taken  by  Quantrill,  for,  said  he,  he  was  raised 
an  "abolitionist." 

Whether  Quantrill  was  a  deception  thus  far  or  not,  rests  with  the 
truth  or  falsity  of  the  latter  statement. 

At  a  later  date  Quantrill  told  the  women  with  whom  he  associated  in 
Missouri  the  same  story  with  many  additions.  In  a  letter  written  by  Mrs. 
Olivia  D.  Cooper  to  W.  W.  Scott,  dated  Lee  'a  Summit,  Jackson  county,  Mo., 
May  9,  1881,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  is  the  following: 

The  man  I  knew  as  W.  C.  Quantrill  always  said  he  was  born  and 
raised  in  Hagerstown,  Md.,  When  he  became  such  a '  noted  rebel  partisan 
chieftain  his  mother  had  to  leave  home  went  to  Virginia  was  there  when  he 
was  wounded  and  died  in  Louisville,  Ky.,  he  wrote  to  her  all  the  time  he 
was  in  the  state  he  told  me  a  few  days  before  he  was  wounded  about  his 
relatives  said  he  had  three  brothers  one  was  killed  in  Kansas  when  they 
were  on  their  way  to  Colorado  while  they  were  in  camp  one  night  the  Jay- 


WHAT  HE  TOLD  THE  MISSOURIANS  169 

murder;  they  told  him  what  they  had  heard  from  Quantrill  and 
only  that.  They  knew  nothing  more;  no  one  in  Missouri  knew 
more.  As  the  work  of  Edwards  is  the  most  pretentious  on  the 
subject,  and  as  it  contains  such  ridiculous  statements  and  bald 
untruths,  some  of  its  assertions  are  noticed  here : 

Major  Edwards  begins  by  saying  that  Quantrill  was  born  at 
Hagerstown,  Md.,  July  20,  1836,  and  that  he  lived  there  until  he 
was  sixteen  years  of  age,  a  devoted  and  affectionate  son,  helping 
his  widowed  mother.  In  his  sixteenth  year  he  was  taken  to 
Cleveland,  Ohio,  by  an  old  friend  of  the  family,  a  Colonel  Toler 
(Torrey?),  and  there  given  an  excellent  English  education.  He 
never  saw  his  mother  again.  He  had  an  only  brother  in  Kansas 
long  before  1855,  older  by  several  years  than  himself.  This  older 
brother  is  represented  to  have  been  a  father  to  him  and  the 
mainstay  of  his  widowed  mother,  "still  fighting  the  uncertain 
battles  of  life  heroically  and  alone."  Quantrill 's  brother  wrote 
for  him  to  come  to  Kansas  to  go  with  him  to  California,  as  ' '  the 
brother  in  Kansas  would  not  go  without  the  brother  in  Ohio," 
and  about  the  middle  of  the  summer  of  1856  both  brothers  began 
the  overland  journey,  each  having  a  wagon  loaded  with  pro- 
visions, four  good  mules  each,  and  "more  or  less  money  between 
them."  They  took  a  negro  along  to  do  the  cooking  and  to  care 
for  the  teams. 

"The  three  were  together  when  that  unprovoked  tragedy 
occurred  which  was  to  darken  and  blacken  the  whole  subsequent 
current  of  the  younger  brother's  life,  and  link  his  name  forever 

hawkers  as  they  were  afterwards  called  came  on  them  in  the  night  killed 
his  brother  shot  him  breaking  his  leg  left  him  for  dead  took  their  outfit 
and  negro  man  they  had  and  left  his  second  brother  killed  fiting  under 
the  gallant  Stone  Wall  Jackson  in  Virginia  his  other  brother  a  lad  twelve 
years  old  was  a  cripple  at  home  with  his  Mother  and  Sister  about  eighteen 
years  of  age.  you  say  he  was  born  at  Canal  Dover  Ohio  is  why  I  think 
there  must  hare  [been]  two  men  of  the  same  name  the  young  man  that 
was  here  gave  his  name  as  Thompson  Quantrill  so  I  cannot  give  any  inform- 
ation concerning  the  [one]  you  speak  of  the  one  I  knew  was  true  to  the 
cause  for  which  he  fought  and  [a]  son  that  any  Mother  might  be  proud  off 
as  to  the  questions  you  ask  I  could  never  think  of  writing  not  being  much 
of  a  hand  at  letter  writing  as  you  see  when  you  read  this  I  know  brave 
deeds  and  hair  bredth  escapes  of  him  and  his  brave  company  but  dates  I 
cannot  remember  he  was  a  true  catholic  this  Thompson  said  they  were  all 
Prebyterians  the  Priest  name  was  Powers  but  I  have  heard  that  he  died 
about  a  year  ago.  Capt.  Quantrill  was  buried  in  the  Catholic  grave  yard 
between  Louisville  &  Portland  Ky.  I  have  his  photograph  but  I  can  not 
send  it  from  the  fact  it  is  not  at  home  at  present  tis  a  good  likeness  of  him. 


170          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

with  some  of  the  savagest  episodes  of  some  of  the  most  savage 
guerrilla  history  ever  recorded."  This  orderly  and  brotherly 
company  camped  one  night  on  the  Cottonwood,  en  route  to  Cal- 
ifornia, (in  1856,  mind  you  —  a  year  before  Quantrill  came  to 
Kansas),  when  thirty  armed  men  "rode  deliberately  up  to  the 
wagons  where  the  Quantrells  were  and  opened  fire  at  point-blank 
range  upon  the  occupants."  The  elder  brother  was  killed  in- 
stantly, and  Quantrill  was  badly  wounded  in  the  left  leg  and 
right  breast  and  left  to  die.  As  the  wagons  were  driven  off  the 
negro  requested  that  food  be  left  the  wounded  man,  which  was 
refused.  The  pockets  of  the  Quantrills  were  robbed.  Then  Quan- 
trill fought  buzzards  by  day  and  wolves  by  night  to  keep  them 
from  devouring  the  dead  body  of  his  brother.  Fever  consumed 
him  and  he  rolled  himself  down  to  the  stream  to  drink,  some 
" fifty  good  steps"  distant,  and  rolled  himself  up  again,  staunch- 
ing his  wounds  with  grass.  He  lived  by  force  of  will  to  avenge 
his  wrongs. 

Early  in  the  morning  of  the  third  day  the  old  Shawnee 
Indian,  Golightly  Spiebuck,  came  along  and  found  this  wounded 
man  in  his  deplorable  condition.  He  buried  the  dead  brother. 
Sp"iebuck  is  said  to  have  told  this  story  often,  but  the  Indian  is 
noted  for  truthfulness,  and  there  was  probably  no  such  man, 
though  Edwards  says  he  died  in  1868.  It  required  four  hours 
for  him  to  dig  a  grave  for  the  dead  Quantrill.  "Quantrell 
watched  the  corpse  until  the  earth  covered  it,  and  then  he  hob- 
bled to  his  knees  and  turned  his  dry  eyes  to  where  he  believed 
God  to  be.  Did  he  pray?  Yes!" 

Quantrill  taught  a  school  the  remainder  of  1856  and  paid 
Spiebuck  liberally  for  saving  him,  and  on  the  15th  day  of  Aug- 
ust, 1857,  went  to  Leavenworth  and  took  the  name  Charley  Hart. 
There  he  became  intimate  with  Lane,  who,  in  this  remarkable 
story,  is  said  to  have  been  in  command  of  a  regiment  with  head- 
quarters at  Lawrence,  a  statement  which  is  preposterous.  Quan- 
trill went  from  Leavenworth  to  Lawrence  and  enrolled  (in  1857, 
mind  you),  in  the  "company  to  which  belonged  all  but  two  of 
the  men  who  did  the  deadly  work  at  the  Cottonwood  River." 
There  he  became  a  fine  soldier  in  that  company  and  was  in  con- 
stant service,  scouting  from  the  Kaw  to  the  Boston  Mountains. 


WHAT  HE  TOLD  THE  MISSOURIANS  171 

One  day  he  was  sent  to  Wyandotte  to  aid  Jack  Winn,  "a  some- 
what noted  horsethief,"  to  get  some  slaves  out  of  Missouri. 
One  of  the  men  who  went  with  Quantrill  failed  to  return  with 
him  and  he  was  found  near  a  creek  some  days  later  with  a  round 
smooth  bullet-hole  in  the  center  of  his  forehead.  Winn  was  also 
shot  just  inside  a  cornfield  there  and  found  with  the  "same 
round  hole  in  the  forehead." 

Then  Quantrill's  company  was  ordered  to  Fort  Scott,  to- 
gether with  three  other  companies.  This  force  was  to  expel 
hordes  of  border-ruffians  who  had  invaded  Kansas  and  overrun 
some  counties  in  those  parts.  Much  fighting  was  done  by  the 
Free-State  men,  and  "Quantrill  was  first  in  every  adventurous 
enterprise  and  the  last  to  leave  upon  the  skirmish  line."  Sixty 
men  were  lost  by  the  Kansas  forces  —  killed.  Forty-two  were 
killed  by  the  border-ruffians  and  eighteen  by  Quantrill  —  eight- 
een. They  had  "the  same  round,  smooth  hole  in  the  middle  of 
the  forehead."  After  the  return  of  the  forces  to  Lawrence  a 
sentinel  was  found  dead  at  his  post  every  week/  "The  men  be- 
gan to  whisper  one  to  another  and  to  cast  about  for  the  cavalry 
Jonah  who  was  in  the  midst  of  them.  One  company  alone,  that 
of  Captain  Pickens  —  the  company  to  which  Quantrill  belonged 
—  had  lost  thirteen  men  between  October,  1857,  and  March,  1858. 
Another  company  had  lost  two,  and  three  one  each.  A  second 
Underground  Railroad  conductor  named  Rogers  had  been  shot 
through  the  forehead,  and  two  scouts  from  Montgomery's  com- 
mand named  Stephens  and  Tarwater." 

Quantrill  was  made  a  lieutenant  in  the  company  of  Captain 
Pickens.  He  and  the  captain  became  intimate.  One  night  Pick- 
ens  told  exultingly  of  having  raided  the  camp  of  two  emigrants 
on  the  Cotton  wood,  ' '  and  the  artistic  execution  of  the  raid  which 
left  neither  the  dead  man  a  shroud  nor  the  wounded  man  a 
blanket."  Pickens  told,  too,  how  the  plunder  was  divided,  the 
mules  sold,  and  the  money  put  in  a  heap  and  gambled  for. 
' '  Three  days  thereafter  Pickens  and  two  of  his  most  reliable  men 
were  found  dead  on  Bull  creek,  shot  like  the  balance  in  the  mid- 
dle of  the  forehead." 

Then  there  was  a  panic  among  the  soldiers,  but  finally  the 
matter  was  forgotten  in  the  daily  routine  of  the  camp.  But 


172          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Quantrill  bought  the  finest  horse  in  the  Territory  and  two  navy 
revolvers.  To  test  the  matter  as  to  whether  he  was  suspected, 
Quantrill  had  a  long  talk  with  Lane,  the  colonel  of  the  regiment, 
and  concluded  that  he  was  not  under  suspicion.  Two  months 
later  Quantrill  was  ordered  to  take  his  own  company  and  de- 
tails from  two  others,  in  all  one  hundred  and  fourteen  men,  and 
scout  out  to  the  extreme  west  end  of  the  Territory,  which,  at  that 
time,  was  the  top  of  the  main  chain  of  the  Rocky  Mountains. 
No  Indians  were  seen,  but  thirteen  men  were  missing  —  three 
shot  through  the  forehead.  Then  an  orderly  was  missing,  and, 
later,  a  member  of  Lane's  staff.  The  last  man  killed  by  Quan- 
trill while  in  this  regiment  was  this  orderly,  who  had  boasted 
that  he  killed  the  elder  Quantrill  at  the  Cottonwood.  And  in 
this  remarkable  story  the  next  incident  is  the  Morgan  Walker 
raid,  taking  Quantrill  over  to  the  Missourians. 

The  whole  tale  is  false.  There  is  no  truth  in  any  part  of 
it.  Quantrill  was  not  born  at  Hagerstown,  Maryland ;  he  had  no 
older  brother  —  he  was  the  first-born.  He  never  started  to 
Pike's  Peak  or  California  with  any  one,  but  did  stop  at  Pike's 
Peak  on  his  return  from  Utah.  He  never  owned  a  wagon.  He 
was  not  set  upon  by  any  body  of  Kansas  men  on  the  Cottonwood, 
nor  at  any  other  point.  There  was  no  such  military  organiza- 
tion in  Kansas  as  that  described.  The  Free-State  forces  were 
the  settlers  who  assembled  at  the  call  of  a  captain  selected  by 
themselves,  and  when  the  border-ruffians  were  expelled  they 
returned  to  their  claims  and  cabins.  Quantrill  never  belonged 
to  any  military  organization  in  Kansas.  He  was  a  member  of  a 
band  of  robbers  in  1860,  most  of  the  time  skulking  through  the 
brush  to  escape  the  strong  hand  of  Sheriff  Walker.  There  was 
no  Captain  Pickens,  no  Jack  Winn,  no  Stephens,  no  Tarwater. 
All  these  characters  and  incidents  originated  in  the  mind  of 
Major  Edwards  or  some  informant  who  ignorantly  or  maliciously 
told  him  a  string  of  falsehoods. 

In  1.856  Quantrill  was  yet  in  Ohio  —  had  not  come  to  Kan- 
sas, but  this  story  puts  him  then  on  the  road  to  California  and 
in  a  massacre  on  the  Cottonwood,  where  his  brother  met  death 
at  the  hands  of  the  Free-State  men.  He  is  made  to  enlist  in  a 
regiment  of  Kansas  settlers  at  Leavenworth  August  15,  1857. 
At  that  time  he  was  in  Miami  (Lykins)  county  stealing  oxen 


WHAT  HE  TOLD  THE  MISSOURIANS  173 

from  Beeson  and  blankets  and  pistols  from  Torrey.  He  is  made 
to  do  military  service  in  a  regiment  which  never  existed,  in  the 
winter  of  1857-58,  while  the  truth  is  that  he  was  at  that  time 
sponging  his  board  from  his  friends  and  stealing  their  food  and 
blankets  at  Tuscarora  Lake,  Johnson  county,  Kansas.  In  the 
fall  of  1858  Edwards  has  Quantrill  shooting  Jack  Winn  at  Wy- 
andotte,  when  in  fact  he  was  in  Utah  cooking  for  a  mess  of  sol- 
diers. He  is  made  to  assassinate  the  men  in  the  company  of 
Captain  Pickens  somewhere  between  the  fall  of  1858  and  the 
Morgan  Walker  raid,  and  finally  to  murder  Captain  Pickens 
himself,  when  the  truth  is  that  most  of  that  time  he  was  a  princi- 
pal character  in  as  disreputable  a  band  of  cut-throats,  kidnappers, 
highway  robbers,  murderers  and  border-ruffians  as  ever  went 
unhung,  and  he  did  his  full  share  of  the  work  engaged  in  by  the 
banditti.  He  robbed  indiscriminately  —  Missouri  or  Kansas, 
Lawrence  or  Independence,  Osawatomie  or  Harrisonville  —  bor- 
der-ruffians or  Free-State  men.  He  was  a  kidnapper  and  a 
Quaker,  a  slave-stealer  and  a  negro-driver,  a  blackmailer  and  the 
humble  disciple  of  the  "Fighting  Parson,"  a  Puritan  and  the 
reproach  of  "Cuckold  Tom."  When  Major  Edwards  would  have 
him  slaying  Free-State  men  by  the  score,  he  was  in  fact  stealing 
cattle  from  the  pro-slavery  settlers  in  the  Salt  Creek  Valley. 
When  his  worshipers  would  have  us  believe  he  was  an  innocent, 
injured  Maryland  boy  in  the  cabin  of  tkj  Shawnee,  he  was  a 
roistering  gambler  at  Fort  Bridger. 

Quantrill  had  no  convictions,  stood  for  no  principles,  was 
in  favor  of  no  State  or  party,  had  no  choice  of  communities, 
could  not  comprehend  honesty,  was  an  utter  stranger  to  loyalty, 
and  did  not  know  such  a  thing  as  friendship. 

As  to  murder  and  assassination.  Major  Edwards  says  he 
killed  at  least  twenty-eight  men  while  he  lived  in  Kansas.  That 
is  probably  the  only  statement  in  this  story  in  which  Major  Ed- 
wards strikes  the  absolute  truth.  He  no  doubt  killed  many 
more.  And  there  were  Illinois,  Indiana,  Utah,  and  the  Pike's 
Peak  country,  in  all  of  which  he  spilled  blood  before  he  had  a 
beard.  Still,  he  was  deified  by  Major  Edwards  and  was  wor- 
shiped in  Missouri.  He  made  widows  and  orphans  by  the 
hundred,  plundered  Puritan  and  Cavalier,  slew  his  foes  and  be- 
trayed and  murdered  his  friends  and  drenched  a  border  in  blood. 


CHAPTER  XII 

AFTERMATH  OF  THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID 

THERE  was  great  excitement  in  that  part  of  Jackson 
county  about  Blue  Springs  when  word  of  what  had  been 
done  at  Morgan  Walker's  spread  abroad.  Men  armed 
themselves  and  rode  to  Walker's  house  by  the  dozen  and  by  the 
score.  The  body  of  the  dead  Jayhawker,  "straightened  for  the 
grave, ' '  was  laid  out  to  be  gazed  upon.  Many  were  the  surmises 
of  his  reckless  daring  and  ferocious  temper.  Several  men  were 
certain  he  had  visited  their  separate  neighborhoods  and  carried 
away  slaves.  Some  had  met  him  on  lonesome  roads  —  were  sure 
of  it  —  and  had  then  marked  him  for  an  abolitionist  and  Jay- 
hawker.  Quantrill  was  questioned  closely  and  repeated  his 
manufactured  tale  about  his  brother's  death,  always  increasing 
the  brutality  and  savagery  of  the  Jayhawkers  and  his  awful 
sufferings  at  their  hands.  Most  of  the  men  believed  he  was  lying, 
and  quite  a  number  favored  hanging  him  then  and  there. 

At  the  solicitation  of  Walker's  wife  and  other  women  Mor- 
rison was  buried  late  in  the  day  after  he  was  killed.  In  those 
days  there  was  a  family  burying-ground  on  almost  every  farm, 
that  on  the  Walker  farm  being  quite  extensive.  But  Morrison 
was  not  buried  in  it.  He  was  carried  to  a  different  part  of  the 
place  and  buried  near  the  road  in  a  rude  coffin  made  by  one  of 
the  slaves  from  native  lumber.  The  crowds  dispersed  and  every 
man  betook  himself  to  his  own  domicile  convinced  that  his  slaves 
were  in  danger  and  that  desperate  steps  would  have  to  be  taken 
to  protect  them. 

It  was  supposed  that  Morrison  was  the  only  raider  who 
would  be  secured  —  that  the  others  had  made  good  their  escape. 
Two  or  three  days  after  the  attack  the  slave  of  a  neighbor  to 
Walker  was  hunting  hogs  in  the  woods  and  found  Ball  and  Lip- 
sey  in  their  camp  in  the  thicket.  They  entreated  him  to  go  with 
them  to  Kansas  and  aid  in  getting  the  wounded  man  back  to  his 


AFTERMATH  OF  THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  175 

home,  assuring  him  of  his  freedom  if  he  should  do  so.  He  was 
directed  to  say  nothing  of  the  camp  of  the  Jayhawkers,  to  secure 
what  cooked  food  he  could  lay  hands  upon,  and  come  with  a 
wagon  and  team  in  which  they  would  all  go  to  Lawrence,  thence 
to  Pardee,  from  which  place  the  negro  would  be  taken  to  Iowa 
and  Canada.  He  agreed  to  do  all  that  was  required  of  him,  no 
doubt  expecting  to  perform  his  promises  at  the  time  he  was 
making  them.  But  his  stupidity  and  the  instinct  of  his  people 
in  their  servitude  made  him  decide  upon  loyalty  to  his  master 
and  treachery  to  those  in  distress  who  would  give  him  liberty. 
He  went  straight  home  and  told  of  finding  the  camp  and  de- 
scribed its  occupants  and  what  they  had  said  to  him.  He  said 
they  had  already  stolen  a  horse  upon  which  to  ride  out  of  Mis- 
souri, and  that  it  was  tied  to  a  sapling  near  the  camp.  Ball  had 
killed  one  of  the  very  hogs  he  had  missed  and  gone  to  hunt,  and 
this  was  furnishing  them  meat.  He  had  also  extracted  a  quantity 
of  buck-shot  from  Lipsey  's  wounds,  which  were  severe  and  highly 
inflamed,  and  he  was  treating  them  with  applications  of  heated 
leaves  and  water. 

The  neighbor  went  at  once  to  the  house  of  Walker  and  told 
what  the  slave  had  said.  The  men  at  Walker's,  accompanied  by 
the  neighbor  and  two  or  three  other  residents  there,  armed  them- 
selves and  set  forth  to  find  the  raiders  and  kill  them.  All  had 
heavily-charged  shot-guns  except  Morgan  Walker  and  Quantrill, 
the  latter  having  only  his  pistol  and  Walker  a  heavy  musket  or 
buffalo-gun,  perhaps  a  Hawkins  rifle.  Dean  and  Southwick  al- 
ways said  that  Ball  saw  them  coming,  and,  knowing  that  the 
game  was  up,  stood  over  Lipsey  waving  his  revolver  and  chal- 
lenging Quantrill  to  step  out  and  fight  to  the  death  with  him.1 

i  In  the  letter  of  Dean  already  quoted  from,  addressed  to  Samuel 
Walker,  it  is  stated: 

A  day  or  two  after  one  of  Walkers  slaves  found  the  other  two  in 
the  woods,  while  looking  up  a  missing  horse,  and  found  the  horse  tied  with 
them.  Ball  was  seemingly  "all  right"  and  had  a  small  camp  fire,  was 
making  a  poultace  of  bark  for  Harry,  who  was  dying  of  his  wounds  The 
slave  left  the  horse  with  them  and  promised  not  to  betray  them,  but  did 
immediately  go  and  tell  Walker,  who  summoned  his  "army"  and  guided 
by  the  negro,  surrounded  the  "camp."  when  Ball  saw  them  approaching 
he  at  once  knew  that  he  was  "lost"  and  singling  out  Quantrell  who  stood 
beside  Walker,  dared  him  to  come  near  enough  to  give  him  a  fair  chance. 
Ball  stood  over  his  dying  comrade  and  shook  his  pistol  at  the  attacking 


176          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

The  Missourians  say  that  Ball  started  to  run  when  Walker 
and  his  posse  appeared,  and  that  Morgan  Walker  shot  him  in  the 
back  of  the  head  with  his  heavy  gun,  killing  him  instantly.  And 
they  say  that  Lipsey  was  killed  by  a  volley  fired  by  the  whole 
Walker  force.  Andrew  J.  Walker  says  that  only  the  Walkers 
and  Quantrill  went  to  the  camp  to  kill  Ball  and  Lipsey,  and  that 
a  volley  fired  by  them  killed  both  men,  and  that  Quantrill  did  not 
fire  and  did  not  kill  either  of  the  men.2 


party  Walker  himself,  being  armed  with  a  long  range  rifle,  shot  Ball  in  the 
forehead  and  killed  him  instantly.  When  Ball  fell,  Quantrell  ran  up,  looked 
at  Harry  and  Ball,  put  his  revolver  into  Harrys  mouth  and  fired,  and  there 
was  no  one  of  the  party  to  tell  Walker  any  different  story  than  Quantrells. 

In  the  statement  made  by  Dean  to  Scott  in  response  to  interrogatories, 
before  quoted  partly,  is  the  following  account  of  this  part  of  the  affair: 

The  second  day  after  the  attack  one  of  Walker's  negroes  reported 
at  the  house  that  in  hunting  up  stray  stock,  he  had  found  in  the  woods 
the  other  two  men,  that  the  small  one  (Harry)  was  badly  wounded  in  the 
hip  and  helpless,  while  Ball  had  obtained  a  horse  and  cooked  up  some  herbs, 
made  a  poultice  for  Harry's  wounds  and  was  getting  ready  to  carry  the 
wounded  man  away.  Walker  loaded  up  his  rifle  and  all  the  guns  on  the 
place  as  quick  as  possible,  and  with  the  many  neighbors  that  were  there 
seeking  the  wonderful,  they  all  started,  led  to  the  place  by  the  negro  who 
made  the  discovery,  Quantrill  and  Walker  walking  together.  When  they 
arrived  at  the  place  they  spread  out  in  a  semicircle  and  advanced  to  rifle 
range,  under  Quantrill 's  caution  to  keep  away  from  Ball's  revolver.  When 
Ball  saw  them  and  then  knew  that  the  negro  had  betrayed  him,  he  stood 
over  his  wounded  comrade  and  shaking  his  revolver  at  Quantrill,  dared  him 
to  come  out  in  fair  sight  and  range,  and  as  he  thus  stood,  Walker  with  his 
rifle  shot  him  square  in  the  center  of  the  forehead.  The  instant  Ball  fell 
Quantrill  ran  up  to  him  and  putting  his  revolver  into  the  mouth  of  Harry, 
who  lay  helpless,  fired,  killing  him. 

2  In  the  letter  of  Andrew  J.  Walker  dated  February  3,  1883,  already 
referred  to  and  quoted  from  is  the  following: 

Two  days  later  a  negro  man  saw  them  in  the  woods  and  told  his 
master  who  told  my  father.  My  father,  brother,  Quantrill  and  myself  went 
out  where  they  were.  They  drew  their  pistols  and  my  father  and  myself 
fired  on  them  killing  them  both.  Quantrill  did  not  kill  either  of  them. 
Southwick  was  so  badly  wounded  that  he  could  not  stand.  They  had  stolen 
a  horse  the  night  before  and  had  it  tied  in  the  brush  near  by.  They  were 
to  leave  that  night. 

The  statements  of  Andrew  J.  Walker  do  not  always  agree.  In  his 
interview  printed  in  the  Kansas  City  Journal,  May  12,  1888,  heretofore 
noticed  herein,  is  the  following  on  this  matter: 

A  negro  servant  of  my  father  saw  them  in  the  brush  a  few  days  later. 
My  father  and  I  shouldered  our  guns,  loaded  with  buckshot  and  went  after 
them,  and  they  were  buried  right  there.  Ball  jumped  up  and  Southwiok 
raised  himself  on  his  elbows.  He  laid  down  immediately  and  did  not  rise 
any  more.  Quantrill  was  along,  but  he  did  not  shoot  at  Ball  or  Southwick. 

Walker  supposed  that  Lipsey  was  Southwick.  As  to  Quantrill '3  shoot- 
ing Ball  and  Lipsey,  see  text  and  notes  ante. 


AFTERMATH  OF  THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID    177 

May  15,  1906,  the  author  was  at  Independence,  Mo.,  and  saw 
there  some  of  Quantrill's  men,  among  them  "Babe"  Hudspeth, 
A.  J.  Liddill,  and  Warren  Welch.  Hudspeth  said  Quantrill 
always  boasted  of  having  killed  the  wounded  man,  justifying  the 
act  by  claiming  that  Lipsey  had  helped  to  plunder  him  and  his 
brother  on  the  Cottonwood,  and  had  fired  with  the  party  that 
killed  his  brother  and  wounded  himself,  but  Hudspeth  did  not 
know  the  name  of  the  wounded  man  was  Lipsey.  There  was  at 
that  time  in  Judge  Liddill's  office  a  man  named  James  Harris. 
Harris  said  he  was  a  boy  about  ten  years  old  when  Quantrill 
came  to  Morgan  Walker's  and  betrayed  his  comrades.  Harris 
said  his  father  lived  about  a  mile  from  the  house  of  Morgan 
Walker.  He  said  that  Walker  shot  the  man  who  started  to 
run  —  shot  him  with  a  big  gun  in  the  back  of  the  head  and  killed 
him  instantly.  He  also  said  that  Quantrill  ran  up  and  shot  the 
wounded  man  in  the  head,  and  the  wounded  man  died  at  once. 
It  was  supposed  that  Quantrill  wished  to  prevent  Lipsey  from 
talking,  fearing  that  he  would  tell  some  truths  that  would  give 
the  Walkers  a  true  insight  into  his  character.  Harris  described 
the  scene  which  occurred  at  the  house  of  Morgan  Walker  when 
he  got  back  from  Independence  and  was  told  of  the  robbery  that 
would  be  attempted  in  a  few  minutes.  Walker  wanted  to  shoot 
or  hang  Quantrill  the  night  of  the  raid  —  thought  it  would  be 
best  to  kill  all  the  raiders,  and  that  others  present  believed  the 
same  thing.  Andrew  J.  Walker,  however,  insisted  that  Quan- 
trill be  saved,  as  his  promise  was  to  that  effect,  and  he  finally 
prevailed. 

Ball  and  Lipsey  were  buried  where  they  were  killed,  and 
without  coffins.  Physicians  or  "doctors"  came,  in  a  day  or  two, 
and  carried  away  all  the  bodies  for  dissection.^ 

While  the  people  of  Walker's  neighborhood  were  satisfied 

3  Dean  and  Southwick  insisted  always  that  Morgan  Walker  turned 
the  bodies  over  to  "doctors"  before  burial,  but  Andrew  J.  Walker  says  in 
the  letters  before  referred  to  that  the  bodies  were  decently  buried.  Old 
residents  of  Jackson  county  have  told  the  author  that  the  bodies  were 
buried  —  that  they  were  present  and  saw  them  buried,  and  that  neither 
Walker  nor  his  family  were  responsible  for  the  exhumation  of  the  bodies. 
They  said  that  public  sentiment  was  such  that  no  effective  protest  could 
be  made,  and  that  it  could  not  be  prevented.  Residents  in  the  country 
have  a  horror  of  desecrated  graves,  and  to  take  a  body  for  the  purpose  of 
12 


178          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

with  the  termination  of  the  raid,  the  county  authorities  believed 
it  should  be  investigated.  The  sheriff  went  to  Walker 's,  arrested 
Quantrill,  and  took  him  to  Independence. 
There  he  threw  the  prisoner  into  jail. 
Andrew  J.  Walker  went  to  Independence 
with  the  sheriff.  There  was  no  formal 
charge  against  Quantrill,  and  Walker 
prevailed  on  the  sheriff  to  release  him. 
That  night  Walker  and  Quantrill  slept 
in  the  same  room  in  an  Independence  tav- 
ern. On  the  following  day  the  town  was 
full  of  people  from  the  surrounding  coun- 
try, and  excitement  ran  high.  There  was 
generally  no  correct  understanding  of  the 
affair.  People  believed  that  all  the  Jay- 
jam« Younger  hawkers  should  have  been  killed;  they 

could  not  comprehend  the  reason  for  Quan trill's  escape.  Quan- 
trill's  statement  was  reduced  to  writing,  and  in  it  he  gave  as 
the  place  of  his  birth,  Hagerstown,  Md>  Walker  saw  that  feel- 
ing was  running  high  against  Quantrill,  and  at  noon  he  realized 
that  it  was  near  the  danger  point.  He  went  to  the  livery  stable 
and  mounted  his  horse  with  the  intention  of  taking  Quantrill 
home  with  him.  When  he  reached  the  public  square  arrange- 
ments were  in  progress  there  for  the  hanging  of  Quantrill,  who 

"cutting  it  up"  is  regarded  as  the  height  of  wickedness,  heartlessness,  and 
depravity.  It  is  not  probable  that  any  of  the  country-folk  approved  the 
course  of  the  "doctors."  Who  these  "doctors"  were  is  not  now  known. 

4  To  the  article  of  H.  S.  Clarke,  published  in  the  Seventh  Volume, 
Kansas  Historical  Collections,  is  added  the  following  foot-note: 

"Memoirs  of  a  Missourian, "  by  John  W.  Henry,  in  the  Kansas  City 
Star,  September  22,  1901,  says:  "In  1860  Quantrill  came  to  Morgan 
Walker,  a  farmer,  near  Blue  Springs,  and  informed  him  of  a  plot  of  four 
Kansas  desperadoes  to  run  off  his  negroes,  giving  the  precise  date  at  which 
they  would  make  their  raid.  They  came  at  the  time  designated  and  were 
killed.  After  the  attempt  to  run  off  Walker's  negroes,  Walker  came  to 
Independence  with  Quantrill,  then  known  as  William  Clark,  and  a  gelf- 
constituted  committee  met  them  in  the  court-house,  and  I  was  requested 
to  reduce  to  writing  Quantrill 's  statement,  which  I  did,  and  kept  it  for 
several  years,  but  do  not  recollect  what  became  of  it.  ...  When  under 
examination  as  above  mentioned,  I  have  forgotten  whether  he  gave  his  true 
name  or  not,  but  am  inclined  to  think  that  he  did  not,  because  I  wrote  to 
the  clerk  of  the  court,  at  Hagerstown,  for  information  in  regard  to  him, 
and  he  wrote  that  he  never  knew  such  a  man.  Yet  I  have  no  doubt  that 
he  came  from  Hagerstown  or  that  vicinity." 


AFTERMATH  OF  THE  MORGAN  WALKER  RAID  179 

seems  then  to  have  been  with  Walker.  Walker  was  able  to  turn 
the  crowd  from  its  purpose,  but  he  had  to  stand  firmly  against 
it  and  say  that  Quantrill  could  be  secured  only  over  his  dead 
body.  When  the  tide  was  turned  he  went  to  a  store  and 
bought  Quantrill  a  suit  of  clothes  made  of  blue  jeans,  and  then 
carried  him  back  to  Morgan  Walker's.  The  following  day  Mor- 
gan Walker  gave  Quantrill  a  horse,  bridle  and  saddle,  and  fifty 
dollars  in  cash,  with  the  understanding  that  Quantrill  was  to 
leave  his  house  for  the  time  being.  A  justice  of  the  peace, 
"Squire  Lobb,"  gave  him  ten  dollars.  Walker  feared  that  if 
Quantrill  remained  with  him  his  farm  would  be  raided  by  parties 
from  Kansas  to  revenge  the  death  of  those  who  came  with  him. 

Stopping  with  different  farmers  in  the  neighborhood  of 
Morgan  Walker,  Quantrill  spent  the  winter  of  1860-61.  He 
was  often  at  Walker's  house.  Most  of  his  time  was  spent  at 
the  hospitable  home  of  Mark  Gill,  where  he  became  a  great 
favorite.  Dreading  publicity  and  fearing  recognition,  he  did 
not  visit  Independence,  but  kept  always  to  the  rural  districts. 
He  made  two  or  three  trips  to  Kansas,  going  to  Paola  and 
remaining  there  some  days  an  honored  guest  at  the  tavern  of 
Torrey,  feted  and  caressed  by  the  family.  He  was  made  a 
hero  by  Potter  and  other  pro-slavery  people  living  then  in 
that  town. 

Quantrill  was  restless  and  uneasy.  He  longed  to  be 
engaged  in  active  operations  against  his  former  associates  in 
Kansas.  He  found  it  difficult  to  organize  forays.  Times  were 
changing.  Kansas  was  a  State,  and  the  people  felt  free  and 
confident  when  they  had  escaped  from  the  domination  of  the 
Buchanan  government.  When  the  State  was  lost  to  the  South, 
many  Missourians  favored  a  cessation  of  hostilities.  And  in 
the  excitement  preceding  secession  the  people  of  Jackson  county 
thought  more  about  getting  their  slaves  safely  to  Texas'  than 
of  preying  longer  upon  the  lean  pioneer  homes  and  towns  of 
bleeding  Kansas.  By  the  light  of  the  moon  Quantrill  rode 
constantly.  It  was  necessary  for  him  to  get  on  a  familiar  and 
confidential  footing  with  men  in  his  new  environment.  His 
trips  to  Kansas  were  in  search  of  something  attractive  enough 
to  induce  his  new  associates  to  again  cross  the  border.  In  the 


180          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

one  last  undertaken,  he  ventured  beyond  Paola  and  deep  into 
the  Jayhawker  settlements  in  the  hope  of  finding  there  some 
adventure  which  would  aid  him  to  rouse  the  waning  enthu- 
siasm along  the  Sni  and  the  Little  Blue.  He  promised  Andrew 
J.  Walker,  then  the  most  hopeful  of  his  new  converts,  that  he 
would  be  gone  a  few  days  only.s 


5  The  best  evidence  is  to  the  effect  that  Morgan  Walker  gave  Quant  rill 
a  black  mare  of  the  Morgan  stock,  and  that  he  called  her  "Black  Bess." 
But  Mr.  George  W.  Thompson,  son-in-law  of  H.  V.  Beeson,  thinks  it  was  a 
horse.  The  animal  had  lost  an  eye  by  some  accident,  but  was  a  thorough- 
bred of  fine  form  and  splendid  qualities,  and  was  a  swift  runner.  Mrs. 
Thompson  remembers  having  seen  Quantrill  dressed  in  his  new  suit  when 
he  rode  by  the  Thompson  home  on  his  way  to  the  house  of  Bennings,  and 
it  was  made  of  blue  jeans. 

In  the  letter  of  Andrew  J.  Walker,  dated  February  3,  1883,  it  is  said: 

The  sheriff  came  and  took  Quantrill  to  Independence  and  put  him  in 
jail.  I  went  with  him  to  that  place  and  got  the  Sheriff  to  let  him  out  that 
night.  I  took  him  to  the  Hotel  and  we  slept  in  the  same  room.  A  great 
many  people  were  in  town  the  next  day  and  the  excitement  ran  very  high. 
In  the  afternoon  I  thought  it  time  to  start  home  and  went  to  the  stable 
to  get  my  horse.  When  I  arrived  on  the  public  square,  I  found  a  great 
crowd  gathered  about.  I  rode  up  to  them  to  see  what  it  meant  and  learned 
that  they  were  going  to  hang  Quantrill.  I  told  them  they  must  not  do  it; 
but  some  of  them  seemed  inclined  to  be  stubborn  about  it.  I  told  them  if 
they  did,  they  would  do  it  over  my  dead  body  and  they  gave  it  up.  I  then 
went  with  Quantrill  and  bought  him  a  suit  of  clothes  of  which  he  was  badly 
in  need  and  we  went  home.  The  next  day  my  father  gave  him  a  horse, 
bridle  and  saddle  and  $50.00  in  money  with  the  understanding  that  he  was 
to  leave,  as  it  was  thought  best.  He  left  for  Kansas;  but  told  me  he 
would  be  back  in  a  few  days  and  he  was.  He  made  two  or  three  trips  into 
Kansas.  He  was  caught  once  and  put  in  jail  at  Aubrey,  I  think. 
In  his  letter  dated  February  22,  1883,  Walker  says: 
The  Sheriff  had  no  warrant  for  his  arrest  when  he  came  and  took 
him  to  Independence.  When  he  got  there  he  put  him  in  jail.  I  asked  him 
why  he  put  him  in  jail,  when  he  answered,  for  his  own  safety  and  would 
take  him  out  as  soon  as  the  excitement  was  over  and  true  to  his  word 
turned  him  out  about  eight  o'clock  that  night.  The  next  day  the  town 
was  crowded  with  people  and  all  sorts  of  rumors  were  afloat  and  a  great 
deal  of  excitement  prevailed.  The  people  had  not  got  to  fairly  understand 
the  matter  and  they  hardly  knew  themselves  what  they  were  going  to  hang 
him  for,  only  for  the  fact  that  he  was  in  bad  company  and  there  was 
naturally  a  prejudice  against  Kansas  men,  as  there  had  been  a  great  deal 
of  trouble  between  Kansas  and  Missouri.  The  crowd  was  mostly  pro- 
slavery  men.  The  reason  we  thought  it  best  for  Quantrill  to  leave  my 
father's  house,  was  this;  we  thought  the  remainder  of  the  gang  would  hunt 
him  up  and  kill  him  if  possible,  or  if  he  staid  there  they  would  burn  my 
father's  house  or  do  him  some  other  great  harm.  He  was  not  in  danger 
of  being  molested  by  the  neighbors,  for  that  matter  had  all  been  settled. 
We  all  felt  under  obligations  to  him  for  saving  my  father's  life  and 
property.  He  never  taught  school  in  Missouri. 


CHAPTER  XIII 

QUANTRILL 's  RETURN  TO  KANSAS  —  HIS  ESCAPE 

QUANTRILL  did  not  venture  to  Lawrence,  but  went  to 
Stanton  and  lodged  with  his  old-time  pro-slavery  friend, 
Bennings,  knowing  that  he  could  there  secure  accurate 
information  of  people  and  conditions  in  Kansas.  He  had 
played  double  so  long  that  he  was  bold  and  thought  he 
might  thus  far  penetrate  his  first  Kansas  haunts  without  dan- 
ger. It  is  said  that  he  had  a  lady  friend  in  that  vicinity  whom 
he  often  visited  —  one  whom  he  met  and  formed  some  acquaint- 
ance with  while  teaching  there.  She  is  said  to  have  been  fasci- 
nated with  him  and  devoted  to  his  interests  and  enterprises,  but 
that  her  parents  strongly  objected  to  his  attentions  to  her.  From 
her  he  knew  he  could  secure  reliable  information  of  his  former 
companions.1 

On  the  25th  day  of  March,  1861,  Quantrill  entered  the 
Stanton  settlement  in  great  glee,  singing  as  he  rode  "Black 
Bess"  along  the  banks  of  the  Marais  des  Cygnes.  He  passed 
the  Beeson  home,  where  Thompson,  the  husband  of  Beeson's 
daughter,  was  then  living.  He  rode  back  of  the  house  near  the 
kitchen  door,  laughed  a  sneering  insult  and  passed  on  down  the 
river  in  the  direction  of  the  home  of  Bennings.  Mrs.  Thompson 
did  not  see  him  and  asked  her  husband  who  had  passed.  He 
replied,  "some  one  you  ought  to  remember."  She  looked  out 
and  saw  Quantrill,  who  was  gayly  dressed  in  his  new  suit  of 
blue  jeans.  She  observed  that  Quantrill  had  been  seen  by  a 
neighbor,  for  William  Strong  hurriedly  mounted  his  horse  and 
rode  towards  Osawatomie.  She  knew  of  the  feeling  in  the  com- 
munity against  Quantrill,  and  she  believed  Strong  went  to  notify 
Captain  Snyder  of  his  presence. 

i  This  information  was  given  the  author  by  Hon.  William  Higgins,  of 
Bartlesville,  Oklahoma,  who  says  the  young  lady  was  well  known  to  him, 
as  were  her  parents,  and  that  she  was  a  Catholic.  This  was  the  last  visit 
Quantrill  made  to  Stanton  or  Kansas  before  the  Civil  War. 


182          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BOEDER  WARS 

This  visit  of  Quantrill  was  the  third  he  had  made  to  the  home 
of  Bennings  after  the  Morgan  "Walker  raid.  He  must  have  had 
more  than  one  object  in  these  visits.  Dean  says,  in  one  of  his 
letters,  that  Quantrill  made  inquiry  of  the  stage  driver  to  learn 
where  he  (Dean)  was.  Dean  believed  that  Quantrill  desired  to 
find  and  murder  him.  He  may  have  intended  to  assassinate 
other  Free-State  men  with  whom  he  had  been  associated.  Cap- 
tain Snyder  had  heard  of  the  flying  visits  of  Quantrill  to  the 
house  of  Bennings,  and  he  had  decided  to  kill  him  if  possible 
when  he  should  come  again.  Snyder  had  provided  means  of 
having  notice  of  the  next  visit  of  Quantrill  —  the  one  he  was 
then  making.  William  Strong  and  a  German  boy  named  Peter 
Hauser  each  rode  to  Osawatomie  with  the  intelligence  of  the 
presence  of  Quantrill  on  the  Marais  des  Cygnes.  Two  parties 
left  Osawatomie  to  capture  Quantrill. 

It  was  from  Peter  Hauser  that  Captain  Snyder  had  word 
that  Quantrill  was  at  the  house  of  Bennings.  His  father,  Sam- 
uel Hauser,  was  justice  of  the  peace  at  Stanton.  Young  Hauser 
did  not  find  Captain  Snyder  when  he  first  arrived  at  Osawato- 
mie, and  he  finally  told  Elias  Snyder  what  message  he  bore. 
Elias  Snyder  immediately  informed  John  S.  Jones  and  W.  M. 
Martin,  and  the  three  armed  themselves  and  went  to  the  house 
of  Bennings,  where  they  stationed  themselves  in  such  position 
that  Quantrill  could  not  escape  them.  It  was  their  intention 
to  arrest  Quantrill  and  take  him  to  Lawrence  and  turn  him  over 
to  Sheriff  Walker  who  had  warrants  for  his  arrest  on  the  charges 
of  horse-stealing,  burglary,  and  kidnapping.  They  intended  to 
kill  him  if  he  gave  them  excuse  or  favorable  opportunity. 

Later,  Peter  Hauser  found  Captain  Snyder  and  delivered 
his  message.  Snyder  desired  to  kill  Quantrill  for  his  treachery 
at  Morgan  Walker's,  but  he  wished  to  kill  him  under  some  color 
of  justification.  He  supposed  Quantrill  would  resist  arrest,  and 
he  went  to  Stanton  where  he  secured  from  Hauser  a  warrant 
based  upon  Quantrill 's  crimes  at  Lawrence.  He  had  with  him 
a  number  of  desperate  men.  The  justice  obstructed  Snyder  in 
his  plans,  prevailing  upon  him  to  allow  one  Jurd,  the  constable, 
to  have  the  warrant  and  make  the  arrest,  to  be  supported  by 
Captain  Snyder  and  his  men  as  a  posse.  Upon  their  arrival  at 


QUANTBILL'S  ESCAPE  183 

the  house  of  Bennings  they  found  Elias  Snyder,  Jones,  and  Mar- 
tin, whom  they  added  to  the  posse.  It  was  then  almost  day- 
light. Quantrill  was  aroused.  He  stood  at  bay.  He  at  once 
realized  that  his  chances  for  life  were  worth  very  little  just 
then.  He  said  he  would  fight  to  the  death,  and  Captain  Snyder 
believed  that  he  meant  to  do  it.  A  long  parley  ensued  between 
Quantrill  and  Bennings  on  the  one  side  and  Snyder  and  his  men 
on  the  other  side.  The  constable  was  finally  admitted  to  the 
house  for  a  conference  with  Quantrill,  it  being  agreed  that 
Snyder  and  his  men  were  to  remain  at  a  distance  during  the 
negotiations.  The  constable  agreed  that  Quantrill  should  have 
protection  if  he  would  submit  to  arrest  and  go  to  the  office  of  the 
justice,  an  arrangement  against  which  Snyder  strongly  protested. 
When  they  came  out  of  the  house  the  constable  held  up  Quan- 
trill's  pistol  to  show  that  he  had  disarmed  the  prisoner,  but 
Bennings  had  slipped  another  heavy  pistol  to  Quantrill. 

Upon  the  appearance  of  Quantrill,  Adolphus,  the  son  of 
Bennings,  was  seen  to  hurry  to  the  stable  and  take  therefrom 
Quantrill's  black  mare,  saddle  and  mount  her  and  ride  like  the 
wind  in  the  direction  of  Paola.  On  the  way  to  Stanton  every 
opportunity  was  sought  to  have  Quantrill  do  something  which 
would  serve  as  an  excuse  for  killing  him,  but  without  success. 
Captain  Snyder  saw  that  he  would  have  to  act  without  having 
a  pretext,  and  raised  his  gun.  As  he  was  in  the  act  of  firing 
some  one  knocked  up  the  muzzle  of  his  gun  and  saved  Quantrill 's 
life.  The  office  of  the  justice  was  over  the  store  of  T.  R.  Wilker- 
son  at  Stanton,  and  Quantrill  and  his  guards  went  into  this  store 
where  the  justice  was  when  they  arrived.  Quantrill  objected  to 
being  sent  to  Lawrence,  saying  he  would  die  before  he  would 
go  there.  The  justice  wished  to  send  him  to  Lawrence,  and  it 
is  probable  that  he  had  sent  a  courier  to  bring  the  sheriff  or  his 
deputy  to  Stanton  to  take  Quantrill  to  Lawrence.  Quantrill 
knew  he  would  never  live  to  reach  Lawrence.  There  was  much 
talk.  At  one  time  Quantrill  believed  Captain  Snyder  would 
kill  him,  and  he  slunk  behind  the  counter  and  cowered  below 
it.  He  proposed  that  he  be  armed  and  given  a  position  where 
he  could  fight  it  out  with  his  captors,  saying  that  he  did  not  like 
to  be  shot  down  like  a  dog.  Captain  Snyder 's  gun  was  pushed 


184          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

from  Quantrill's  body  more  than  once.  The  justice  finally 
decided  to  commit  Quantrill  to  the  Paola  jail.  While  the  com- 
mitment was  being  made  out  John  S.  Jones  seated  himself  on 
the  counter  where  but  one  man  was  between  himself  and  Quan- 
trill, who  was  also  sitting  on  the  counter.  Jones  all  the  time 
fumbled  at  the  lock  of  his  Sharps 's  rifle,  pretending  that  it  was 
out  of  order.  Getting  his  gun  across  the  lap  of  his  neighbor 
with  the  muzzle  against  Quantrill,  whose  attention  was  attracted 
elsewhere,  he  suddenly  cocked  it  and  attempted  to  shoot,  but  the 
gun  missed  fire,  and  Quantrill  had  again  escaped  death.2 

*  This  account  of  the  capture  of  Quantrill  at  the  house  of  Bennings 
is  the  result  of  what  the  author  secured  from  different  parties  who  saw  the 
whole  affair.  The  accounts  do  not  agree  as  to  detail.  Following  is  what 
George  W.  Thompson  told  the  author,  Jan.  14,  1906.  Mr.  Thompson  lives 
at  No.  1030  Morris  Avenue,  Topeka,  and  married  Frances,  daughter  of  H. 
V.  Beeson.  He  was  one  of  the  posse,  and  the  author  wrote  his  account  for 
his  Collection,  as  follows: 

George  W.  Thompson  told  of  the  capture  of  Quantrill.  His  account 
differs  from  that  of  Shearer.  He  says  that  Ely  Snyder,  the  blacksmith, 
of  Osawatomie,  and  his  men  often  made  raids  into  Missouri  to  get  slaves 
and  other  property,  and  that  Quantrill  was  frequently  with  them.  On  one 
occasion  he  had  no  gun  or  revolver,  and  as  one  of  the  band  did  not  go 
Quantrill  took  his  arms.  The  raid  was  successful,  and  the  plunder  was 
divided  in  Osawatomie.  Quantrill  was  not  satisfied  with  the  portion  fall- 
ing to  him  and  would  not  give  up  the  arms  of  the  party  who  could  not 
go,  but  kept  them,  saying  they  would  just  about  make  him  even.  He  may 
have  kept  a  horse,  also,  thus  angering  Snyder,  after  which  he  remained  at 
Paola  much  of  the  time.  One  day  he  came  from  Paola  to  the  house  of 
John  Bennings,  about  a  mile  south  of  Stanton.  As  he  passed  the  house 
of  William  Strong  he  was  recognized,  and  Strong  went  to  Osawatomie  to 
notify  Snyder  and  his  men.  The  next  morning  some  eight  or  ten  of  them 
went  to  the  house  of  Bennings,  and  Thompson  thinks  they  went  there  to  kill 
Quantrill.  Quantrill  believed  that  Snyder  and  his  men  would  kill  him  and 
refused  to  come  out  of  the  house,  saying  that  he  would  fight  if  they  came 
in.  They  claimed  they  wanted  a  settlement  on  the  plunder  which  they 
had  fallen  out  about.  Seeing  that  Quantrill  would  not  come  out,  they 
sent  one  of  their  party  to  Samuel  Hauser,  justice  of  the  peace  at  Stanton 
and  secured  a  warrant  for  the  arrest  of  Quantrill  for  horse-stealing.  The 
constable,  one  Jurd,  came  to  serve  the  warrant.  Quantrill  asked  him  to 
protect  his  life  and  Jurd  agreed  to  do  so.  Then  Quantrill  came  out  and 
surrendered  to  the  constable,  who  summoned,  first,  however,  some  half  a 
dozen  men  to  defend  him,  among  them  Thompson.  They  took  him  to  the 
office  of  the  justice  of  the  peace,  which  was  over  the  store  of  T.  E.  Wilker- 
son,  in  Stanton.  The  justice  had  sent  to  Paola  for  the  Sheriff  to  come  out 
as  quickly  as  possible  and  bring  a  posse  to  protect  Quantrill  and  take  him 
to  Paola.  When  the  men  arrived  at  Wilkerson's  store  Quantrill  was  put 
inside  and  a  man  placed  at  each  door  to  keep  Snyder  and  his  men  out  until 
the  arrival  of  the  Sheriff.  Snyder  and  his  men  did  not  know  the  Sheriff 
had  been  sent  for.  Thompson  was  placed  at  the  back  door  of  the  store. 


QUANTRILL'S  ESCAPE  185 

The  foregoing  account  of  the  capture  of  Quantrill  at  the 
home  of  Bennings  may  not  embrace  all  that  occurred  on  that 
occasion.  Captain  Ely  Snyder  says  that  he  become  suspicious 
of  Jurd,  and  that  he  then  broke  down  the  door  and  captured 
Quantrill.  That  he  did  this  is  more  than  probable,  for  he  was  a 

He  heard  the  click  of  a  gun  aa  it  was  cocked  behind  him;  he  put  out  his 
hand  and  knocked  the  barrel  of  the  gun  to  one  side,  and  it  was  jerked 
outside  before  he  could  learn  who  had  attempted  to  shoot  Quantrill.  The 
Sheriff  came  and  put  Quantrill  into  his  buggy  and  drove  away  with  him 
and  put  him  in  jail  at  Paola.  The  justice  had  the  papers  ready  when  the 
Sheriff  arrived.  Thompson  says  Quantrill  did  not  go  up  stairs  at  all.  He 
does  not  remember  that  Robert  Shearer  was  there  at  all.  Wilkerson  was 
a  loyal  man. 

The  account  of  Quantrill 's  riding  by  Thompson's  house  was  given  the 
author  by  Mrs.  Thompson,  August  30,  1907. 

In  the  letter  written  by  Captain  Ely  Snyder  to  G.  A.  Colton,  dated 
at  Osawatomie,  Feb.  14,  1883,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  he 
gives  his  version  of  the  affair,  as  follows: 

Erly  in  the  spring  of  61  I  do  not  now  remember  the  day  of  the 
month  or  the  month  at  this  time  but  can  get  the  date  of  the  time  to  the 
day  Late  in  the  Evening  Squire  Hauser  Sent  me  a  message  that  Quantrill 
was  at  Bennings  I  got  5  men  to  go  with  me  and  captive  the  outlaw  and 
bring  him  to  Justice  with  a  inch  roap  when  we  came  near  to  Benings  I 
left  the  party  and  in  the  woods  and  went  to  Hausers  House  and  Hauser 
Advised  me  to  make  the  arest  under  the  shade  of  Law  as  I  did  not  think 
best  but  Mr  Hauser  was  at  the  time  Justice  of  the  Peace  and  I  gave  way 
to  his  Plan  and  he  Apointed  me  Constable  and  then  reconsidered  it  and 
thought  best  to  give  the  papers  in  the  hand  of  the  Constable  which  was 
Jurd  said  that  Jurd  would  be  all  right  Jurd  proved  to  be  a  friend  to 
Quantrell  and  spoiled  the  hole  Bisness  he  Jurd  told  me  that  he  would  go 
in  and  being  acquainted  with  Benings  that  he  had  warrant  for  Quantrell 
to  have  him  run  out  at  the  back  door  and  then  we  could  get  him  but  Jurd 
did  not  do  that,  he  told  Quantrell  that  I  had  a  posse  of  men  out  side 
and  for  him  not  to  go  out  or  I  would  get  him  so  Jurd  made  me  fals  prommas 
and  kept  me  waiting  until  almost  daylight  when  [I]  hured  the  thing  up  by 
bursting  open  the  door  and  stept  in  the  house  Quantrell  was  standing  in 
the  middle  door  with  a  Revolver  in  each  hand  Quantrell  atempted  to  rais 
and  bring  them  to  range  on  me  when  I  spoke  to  [him]  and  said  bill  drop 
them  revolvers  or  I  will  kill  you  I  had  my  Revolver  in  range  of  the  place 
wair  he  Lived  he  Obaid  quick  I  then  told  [him]  to  hand  them  Revolvers 
to  Jurd  wich  he  did  he  then  was  taken  to  Squire  Hausers  office  and  Jurd 
and  Bening  sent  to  Paola  for  Millar  and  White  and  Potter  theas  three 
Proslaves  came  and  waved  examination  and  he  would  go  to  Jail  So  the 
Constable  Jurd  took  him  to  Jail  Shortly  after  that  I  got  a  order  from 
Sheriff  and  [he]  depetised  me  [and]  ordered  me  to  Bring  Wm  Quantrell 
to  Larrance  and  turn  him  over  to  the  athorities  of  Do[u]glis  Co  I  shoed 
my  papers  to  H.  H.  Williams  and  my  demand  he  would  have  to  give  up 
the  Prisner  [He]  said  he  could  not  go  to  Paola  for  2  hours  but  would 
send  his  depety  wich  was  Jim  Cree  to  see  that  Quantrell  was  not  taken  out 
of  Jail  before  we  got  over  and  Cree  said  that  Williams  told  him  to  go  to 
White  and  tell  White  that  Snyder  had  a  order  to  take  him  [Quantrill]  to 
Larance  and  when  Williams  and  Myself  came  in  paola  Quantrell  was  Left 


186          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

fearless  man.  He  was  also  a  truthful  man,  and  he  would  not 
have  made  any  claims  not  fully  justified.  The  only  feature  in 
his  description  that  seems  improbable  is  his  failing  to  kill  Quan- 
trill  when  he  had  the  drop  on  him  when  he  broke  down  the  door 

out  of  Jail  and  on  the  horse  that  Walker  giv  Him  for  his  Sirvis  of  Geting 
Some  of  the  Kansas  Abilishens  kild. 

The  Eev.  Kobert  Shearer,  of  Miami  county,  Kansas,  in  a  letter  to  the 
author,  dated  August  30,  1903,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author,  gives 
an  account  of  this  affair.  He  has  the  date  a  year  too  late,  saying  it  was 
in  the  spring  of  1862,  when  it  was  in  the  spring  of  1861.  There  are  other 
things  in  the  letter  that  contradict  what  others  say,  as  follows: 

Wm  C.  Quantrell  was  in  Stanton  in  1857  &  1858  in  1859  He  went 
to  Pikes  Peak  and  returned  same  year.  He  lived  at  Lawrence  for  some 
time  but  returned  to  Stanton  in  1861  in  the  early  spring  of  1862  he  was 
living  near  Stanton  with  a  man  by  the  name  of  Bening  I  was  in  the 
Kansas  Militia  doing  service  on  the  Kan.  line  it  was  about  the  first  of 
April  1862  I  came  home  on  a  short  furlow  leaving  my  Horse  at  Home  I 
went  to  Stanton  telling  my  wife  I  would  be  back  in  one  or  2  Hours  I 
carried  my  Eevolver  with  me  as  I  walked  up  to  the  only  Store  in  the 
town  Quantrell  and  a  man  by  the  name  of  Jurd  a  Constable  was  standing 
about  30  feet  from  the  Store  House  I  shook  Hands  with  them  I  saw 
five  men  Walking  very  fast  coming  in  our  direction  about  20  yards  off  they 
Had  Sharps  Eifles  slung  over  their  Shoulders  Mr.  Jurd  said  to  me  I 
depotise  you  to  Protect  Quantrell  from  those  men  I  knew  2  of  them  One 
of  them  Was  Elias  Snyder  the  other  was  called  Buckskin  as  they  came 
near  one  of  them  drew  his  gun  to  shoot  Quantrell  I  knocked  the  gun  up 
and  drew  my  Eevolver  and  said  whats  up  Quantrell  said  they  are  going 
to  kill  me  I  said  what  for  he  said  he  did  nbt  know  Quantrell  was  very 
Pale  and  Excited  I  said  if  there  is  any  shooting  I  would  take  a  Hand 
in  it  and  ordered  Quantrell  to  go  into  the  Store  thoes  men  had  their  guns 
cocked  and  trying  to  get  a  shot  at  him  I  kept  my  Pistol  Presented  in 
their  direction  saying  I  would  shoot  the  man  that  fired  the  first  shot. 
When  Quantrell  got  in  the  store  I  held  the  door  there  was  a  ladder 
standing  in  the  center  of  the  Floor  reaching  to  the  Sealing  I  ordered 
Quantrell  to  enter  a  square  Hole  in  cealing  When  he  was  up  I  walked 
in  and  Started  up  the  Ladder  saying  that  the  first  man  that  stuck  his  head 
above  the  trap  door  I  would  kill  there  was  one  bed  up  there  I  found 
Quantrell  sitting  on  it.  They  ordered  me  to  come  down  or  they  would 
shoot  through  the  floor  but  they  did  not  know  just  where  we  were  then 
they  said  they  would  burn  the  house  the  Store  Keeper  to  save  his  building 
tried  to  get  us  to  come  down  Quantrill  said  to  me  to  give  him  my  pistol 
and  for  me  to  go  down  and  he  would  sell  his  life  to  the  best  advantage 
I  told  him  he  was  my  prisoner  and  that  I  would  turn  him  over  to  the 
Sheriff  I  had  told  Jurd  to  send  some  one  after  the  Sheriff  and  Possey  to 
Paola  He  sent  a  man  by  the  name  of  John  Billings  on  Quantrells  Horse 
it  was  10  miles  in  less  than  three  hours  the  Sheriff  came  with  4  good  man 
I  turned  Quantrell  over  to  them  next  day  they  send  a  Man  out  to  My 
Place  for  me  to  Come  to  Paola  I  went  in  they  wanted  to  know  why  I 
had  Quantrell  under  arest  I  was  in  the  Jail  talking  with  Quantrell  and 
the  Sheriff  I  stated  that  I  had  taken  him  to  save  his  life.  In  less  than 
20  Minutes  he  was  out  and  gone  He  went  straight  for  Missouri  and  took 
the  Bush. 


QU ANTHILL'S  ESCAPE  187 

and  entered  Bennings's  house.  His  mistake  seems  to  have  been 
in  consulting  with  Squire  Hauser.  The  officer  did  his  duty  and 
saved  the  life  of  Quantrill,  who  stood  on  the  verge  of  the  grave 
a  number  of  times  before  the  gates  of  the  old  jail  at  Paola  closed 
upon  him. 

The  son  of  Bennings  arrived  at  Paola  early  in  the  morning 
bearing  a  note  from  Quantrill  to  the  border-ruffian  Potter  or 
some  of  the  pro-slavery  people  with  whom  Quantrill  was  on  inti- 
mate terms.  It  is  possible  that  Squire  Hauser  had  sent  mes- 
sengers to  hasten  the  sheriff.  Very  soon  after  the  intelligence 
of  the  posture  of  affairs  arrived  at  Paola  wheeled  vehicles  left 
that  town  at  flying  speed  loaded  with  border-ruffians  and  pro- 
slavery  friends  of  Quantrill.  It  was  enough  to  know  that  an 
accomplice  was  in  trouble  and  needed  help.  Potter  claims  to 
have  led  the  chase,  and  the  whole  posse  descended  upon  Stanton 
with  that  brazen  assurance,  loud  profanity,  and  vulgar  swagger 
then  common  to  the  border-ruffians  in  their  attitude  and  inter- 
course with  the  Free-State  settlers.s  They  found  the  commit- 

3  In  his  rambling  way  Potter  has  a  long  account  of  this  matter  in  the 
letters  written  by  him  and  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  In  that 
dated,  Harrison,  Arkansas,  Jan.  20,  1896,  he  says: 

A  few  weeks  after  this' meeting  Hon  George  W.  Miller,  called  to  me 
as  I  was  passing  Col  Torreys  Hotel,  one  morning  early  and  handed  me  a 
letter  from  Quantrell  stating  that  he  was  at  Mr  Bannings  House,  &  Sur- 
rounded by  some  14  Jayhawkers,  who  were  trying  to  take  him  a  Prisoner 
on  a  Fic[ti]tious  charge 

I  after  reading  the  letter  I  told  Mr.  Miller  that  there  was  but  one 
thing  to  do  &  that  was  to  Eaise  14  other  men  &  go  over  there  &  take  him 
from  them  and  Protect  him 

He  wanted  to  know  if  I  could  get  the  men,  &  how  long  it  would  take. 
I  replied  that  I  will  be  ready  in  15  Minutes  with  armed  men,  &  will  you 
go  for  one.  he  replied  certainly 

I  sent  to  the  Livery  stable  &  got  a  Team  &  three  seated  Hack  I 
called  on  Lawyer  E.  W.  White  Lawyer  Robert  White  Lawyer  Massey,  Dr. 
W.  D.  Hoover,  Tom  Kelley,  Goodwin  Taylor  merchant  Lon  Light,  and 
several  others  whose  names  I  do  not  now  remember.  We  went  there  in  a 
sweeping  trot  in  Hacks,  Buggies  &  on  Horeseback.  no  one  else  in  Town 
knew  where  we  were  going  or  any  thing  about  our  business,  until  we  came 
back  with  Quantrell  in  triumph.  We  were  all  armed  with  Revolvers,  Rifles, 
&  shot  guns,  &  Plenty  of  amunition 

I  was  the  first  to  arrive  in  the  Little  Town  of  Stanton.  I  went  direct 
to  the  store  of  Tom  Wilkerson,  where  Quantrell  was  in  custody  of  the 
constable  The  store  was  filled  with  the  14  Jayhawkers  under  Capt  Snyder 
I  walked  direct  to  Quantrell  shook  hands  with  him,  &  said  How  do  you  do 
Bill.  What  are  you  driving  at  now?  stealing  Horses? 

Quantrell.     Well  they  charge  me  with  it. 

Potter:     Oh  certainly  they  are  all  honest  men  that  prefer  the  charge 


188          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

ment  papers  ready  and  the  justice  anxious  to  have  Quantrill 
off  his  hands  alive.  He  delivered  papers  and  prisoner  to  the 
sheriff  or  his  representative  and  bade  the  ruffians  be  off,  for 
he  could  restrain  the  men  of  Captain  Snyder  no  longer.  Quan- 
trill was  hurried  to  Paola,  where  he  was  caressed  by  the  Torreys 

against  you  I  suppose.  They  know  nothing  about  stealing  Horses  &  Nig- 
gers, Robing  &  Burning  Houses,  &  murdering  citizens,  from  one  end  of  the 
Land  to  the  other. 

Eli  Snyder  was  standing  a  few  feet  from  us  &  heard  every  word  I 
said  as  I  wanted  him  to.  He  winced  &  walked  a  few  steps  toward  the 
door.  I  stooped  down  &  whispered  to  Quantrell  &  said,  Bill  dont  be  uneasy. 
I  have  plenty  of  men  coming.  He  replied  I  am  not  one  bit  afraid,  and 
the  same  Pleasant  &  cheerful  smile  appeared  on  his  lips,  that  allways 
accompanied  him  when  in  danger.  Not  one  sign  of  fear  did  he  show, 
either  by  word  or  act.  His  Lawyers  called  for  a  Private  consultation, 
which  the  Justice  granted  in  the  store  Boom  up  stairs.  When  it  was 
decided  to  Wave  his  examination  &  demand  a  commitment  to  the  county 
jail  It  was  well  understood  by  us  that  the  Justice  who  was  a  Jayhawker 
sympathizer  &  an  enemy  of  Quantrell  would  prolong  the  examination  by 
summoning  one  witness  after  another  until  reinforcements  of  Jayhawkers 
could  collect  &  out  number  &  over  power  us  &  then  take  Quantrell  out  & 
hang  him. 

I  went  to  Judd  the  constable  who  had  Quantrell  in  charge  &  asked 
him  what  he  meant  by  summoning  such  men  as  Snyder,  &  his  followers  as 
a  Posse  comitattus,  to  assist  to  make  an  arrest  of  a  citizen  accused  of 
crime?  he  replied  well  Potter  I  will  tell  you  how  it  occurred  at  midnight  a 
messenger  come  to  my  House  &  told  me  the  Justice  of  the  Peace  wanted 
me.  I  went  there,  that  Snyder  &  his  men  were  all  there  with  Arms  & 
that  they  would  assist  in  making  the  arrest,  &  save  the  trouble  of  disturb- 
ing the  Neighbors.  I  replied,  yes  you  are  all  very  fraid  of  disturbing 
the  country  you  ought  to  be  ashamed  of  yourself  for  selecting  such  men 
a  Possey  commitattus 

He  handed  me  the  Warrant  &  affidavit,  &  said,  here  Potter  take 
these  Papers.  I  will  turn  the  matter  over  to  you.  I  do  not  want  to  have 
any  thing  more  to  do  with  it. 

I  took  the  papers  &  told  him  to  Dismiss  his  Jayhawkers  &  tell  them 
he  had  no  further  use  for  them. 

I  went  to  Quantrell  &  his  Lawyers  told  them  what  I  had  done  Some 
of  our  Party  were  affraid  of  an  attackt  on  our  road  to  Paola.  I  told 
Quantrell  that  I  would  bring  him  safe  &  well  to  Paola,  or  never  go  back 
their  alive 

I  wrote  out  the  commitment  to  the  county  Jail  &  finally  the  Justice 
signed  it. 

On  January  22nd  Potter  wrote  another  letter  to  W.  W.  Scott  in  which 
he  continues  his  boasting  account.  The  reader  is  requested  to  note  with 
what  pride  he  tells  of  his  connection  with  Quantrill;  how  he  shook  hands 
with  him  and  called  him  "Bill,"  etc.  His  additional  account  is  as  follows: 

I  went  down  stairs  in  the  store  &  bought  2  Ibs  of  Buck  shot  1  Box 
of  Water  Proof  caps  &  2  Ibs  of  Rifle  Powder,  recapped  every  gun  that 
needed  it,  distributed  amunition  to  all,  with  orders  to  use  it  &  take  good 
aim  in  case  they  made  the  attack 

I  will  state  here  that  Justice  of  the  Peace  very  reluctantly,  consented 


QUANTRILL'S  ESCAPE  189 

and  sympathized  with  by  most  of  the  inhabitants.  He  was 
feasted  at  the  Torrey  hotel  until  night,  when  he  was  "accom- 
panied" to  the  jail,  and  was  secretly  given  a  heavy  navy  revolver. 
He  was  also  furnished  with  a  large  knife  with  which  he  later 
assaulted  the  jailer,  and  he  was  assured  that  he  would  be  pro- 

to  Permit  Quantrell  to  wave  his  examination  E.  W.  White  &  G  W  Miller 
his  attorneys  showed  him  the  law  in  the  case  &  told  him  very  plainly  that 
it  was  his  duty  to  do  so,  &  had  no  power  or  authority  to  prevent  it.  Bat 
even  then  he  went  down  in  the  store  &  held  a  consultation  with  Eli  Snyder 
in  low  tone  of  voice.  I  over  heard  Snyder  remark  to  him,  the  Justice 
of  the  Peace  well,  it  is  the  only  thing  that  we  can  do,  some  other  time. 

I  frequently  interrupted  their  secret  conversation,  by  telling  Mr  Jurd 
that  we  were  waiting  on  him  &  had  no  time  to  waste.  Then  Jurd  finally 
went  up  stairs,  &  consented  to  the  waiving  of  the  examination  He  then 
wanted  to  go  to  his  office  &  look  up  the  Form  to  write  out  the  commitment. 
I  handed  him  a  form  of  commitment  which  I  had  allready  written  out. 
all  ready  for  his  Signature.  Jurd  read  it  over  &  finally  signed  it.  In  the 
mean  time,  one  of  the  Jayhawkers,  below  stated  out  loud  in  the  store  below, 
that  we  had  sent  over  to  Missouri  for  a  Eeinforcement  of  Two  hundred 
Border  Ruffians  who  were  then,  as  he  said  on  their  way  to  Paola  to  Liberate 
Quantrell,  and  that  Quantrell  should  never  leave  there  alive  &  go  back  to 
Paola.  I  looked  him  in  the  face  and  told  him  Plainly  that  Quantrell  was 
going  to  Paola,  according  to  Law  and  that  I  would  take  him  there  or  else, 
I  would  strew  the  road,  between  here  &  Paola  with  dead  men,  no  farther 
threats  were  made. 

I  also  summoned,  a  Deputy  Sheriff  by  the  name  of  Cree,  as  one  of 
my  Posse  commitatus  to  Preserve  the  Peace  &  assist  in  guarding  Quantrell 
to  Paola  I  also  summoned  some  two  others  who  refused  to  act.  one  was 
a  Doctor  living  in  Stanton.  I  do  not  now  remember  his  name. 

Constable  Judd,  was  sent  up  stairs,  to  ask  me  to  search  Quantrell 
for  a  Pistol  that  he  was  supposed  to  have. 

I  went  to  Quantrell,  told  him  that  the  Snyder  gang,  wanted  him 
searched,  &  to  give  me  his  Eevolver  if  he  had  one.  he  immediately  drew 
it  from  his  Breast,  &  handed  it  to  me,  before  Judd,  got  up  in  the  Boom.  I 
put  it  in  my  breast  under  my  vest.  Turning  to  Jurd  I  said,  Bill  they 
think  you  are  armed,  let  Mr  Judd  search  you  then  they  will  be  satisfied, 
he  Judd  done  so  &  remarked,  no  he  has  no  Weapons  went  on  down  before 
us  &  told  them  so.  as  soon  as  Judd's  back  was  turned  I  handed  Quantrell 
his  Revolver,  &  told  him  that  if  they  fired  one  shot,  that  I  would  shoot 
Snyder  in  the  face  &  keep  shooting,  as  long  as  there  was  one  left,  &  for 
him  to  do  the  same  I  gave  orders  for  all  others  to  do  I  came  down  stairs 
in  the  Store  with  Goodwin  Taylor  &  Quantrell  &  the  rest  of  my  Posse 
following  me.  with  my  Double  barrell  shot  gun  in  my  left  hand,  &  my 
navy  six  in  my  right  hand.  I  commanded  the  Peace  I  ordered  the  mob 
to  disperse 

The  mob  opened  &  some  went  out  in  the  street  &  stood  around  & 
looked  at  us,  but  made  no  move  to  attack  us. 

The  three  seated  Hack  was  at  the  door.  Quantrell  &  G.  Taylor 
occupied  the  Middle  seat,  three  others  were  in  the  Hack  Lon  Light  drove 
his  Hack.  Lawyer  E.  W.  White  &  Lawyer  Massey,  rode  in  Mr.  Whitei 
Buggy  They  all  started  out  of  town  Dr  Hoover,  Tom  Kelley  &  my  self 
were  the  hist  ones  to  leave  town,  no  farther  threats  were  made 

Mr  Cree,  the  constable  of  Ossawatomie  Township,  &  one  of  the  Dep- 


190          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

tected,  the  foremost  lawyers  of  the  town  being  "retained"  for 
him,  or  perhaps  they  volunteered  their  services  in  his  behalf. 
Quantrill  was  regarded  by  Paola  as  a  guest  of  honor.  But  it  was 
then  a  border-ruffian  town,  as  were  Fort  Scott  and  Leavenworth 
in  the  early  territorial  days.  Many  disloyal  people  remained 
there  until  the  Civil  War  was  well  under  way,  but  by  the  con- 
clusion of  that  struggle  it  was  a  loyal  Kansas  town  and  has  ever 
remained  such;  the  border-ruffians  disappeared. 

Quantrill  remained  in  jail  for  a  few  days.  His  friends  were 
active  in  his  behalf.  They  secured  a  writ  of  habeas  corpus. 
Judge  Thomas  Roberts  issued  the  writ.  When  Quantrill  was 
produced  before  him,  the  judge  gave  him  his  liberty.4  There 
was  great  rejoicing  in  the  town  and  Quantrill  was  again  ban- 
quetted  at  Colonel  Torrey's  tavern,  after  which  he  was  loaded 
with  delicacies  and  caresses  and  escorted  to  the  door,  where  he 
found  "Black  Bess"  equipped  to  bear  him  to  Missouri.  He 
mounted  the  nag  just  as  Captain  Ely  Snyder  and  H.  H.  Will- 

uties  of  Mr  Williams  who  was  sheriff  of  Lykins  County  at  that  time  since 
changed  to  its  present  name  Miami  County,  were  each  members  of  the 
Eepublican  party.  Mr.  Cree,  by  his  honorable  conduct  in  this  case  received 
the  commendations,  of  the  Honorable  Kepublicans  in  his  party  as  well  as 
the  Democrats,  for  there  was  a  great  many  members  of  the  Eepublican 
Party  in  Kansas,  that  were  bitterly  opposed  to  the  Jayhawkers  &  their  way 
of  doing  business.  H.  H.  Williams  the  sheriff  of  Lycans  County,  was 
according  to  Quantrell's  story,  a  Frequent  visitor  in  Jennison's  camp  and 
often  consulted,  with  him  &  he  was  well  known  at  that  time  to  be  a  Jayhawk- 
ing  Sympathizer  In  fact  after  the  commencement  of  the  civil  War,  that  Des- 
olated our  loved  country,  H.  H.  Williams  this  same  sheriff  of  Miami  county 
in  May  or  June  1861  organized  a  company  of  Jayhawkers  at  Ossawatomie, 
led  them  in  Missouri  went  to,  the  Little  town  of  West  Point  on  the  Border, 
&  with  his  hands  in  open  daylight,  Broke  down  the  door  of  the  first  store 
that  was  Bobbed  by  the  Kansas  Jayhawkers,  at  the  commencement  of  the 
war  in  the  state  of  Missouri.  The  solid  facts  of  History  will  accord  him 
that  high  Honor,  he  was  afterwards  a  colonel  of  a  colored,  Eegiment  of 
Kansas,  Troops,  &  in  1866,  under  the  Eeconstruction  acts  he  was  sheriff 
of  Jackson  Co  Missouri,  for  one  Term. 

4  In  the  Collection  of  the  author  there  is  a  letter  written  by  Thomas 
Boberts  to  H.  V.  Beeson.  It  is  dated,  Paola,  May  16,  1881,  and  says: 

Afterwards  I  saw  him  [Quantrill]  in  the  early  summer  of  1861  he 
was  confined  in  the  County  Jail  of  Miami  County  (then  Lykins  Co) 
Kansas.  I  was  then  acting  as  Probate  Judge  of  said  County.  He  was 
taken  out  and  brought  before  me  on  a  Writ  of  Habeas  Corpus,  and  by  me 
was  released  from  Custody  their  being  no  legal  cause  for  his  confinement, 
after  his  release  he  left  Paola  going  North  and  that  was  the  last  time  I 
ever  saw  him  I  am  confident  it  was  the  same  W.  C.  Quantrell  that  led 
the  gang  of  Bushwhackers  that  committed  so  many  Atrocities  in  Kansas 
and  Missouri  for  instance  the  Lawrence  raid. 


QUANTRILL 'S  ESCAPE  191 

iams  entered  the  town  with  a  posse  to  take  him  to  Lawrence 
upon  writs  issued  by  the  courts  there.  Quantrill  put  his  thumbs 
to  his  nose  and  made  a  defiant  gesture,  and  then,  leaning  for- 
ward in  his  saddle,  patting  himself  in  a  still  more  defiant,  vul- 
gar, and  insulting  gesture,  put  spurs  to  his  beast  and  bade  a  final 
farewell  to  Kansas.  This  was  the  third  day  of  April,  1861,  and 
he  never  returned  again  except  as  a  spy,  murderer,  or  assassin 
under  the  cloak  of  a  soldier  in  the  Rebellion.? 


S  In  his  letter  dated  Jan.  22,  1896,  already  referred  to,  Potter  tells 
with  many  a  proud  boast  of  the  reception  tendered  Quantrill  at  Paola,  and 
quotations  therefrom  are  made  here: 

We  got  to  Paola  took  supper  at  Col  Torreys  Hotel,  after  supper  I 
accompanied  Quantrell  to  the  county  Jail.  I  took  his  Pistol,  &  after  Tom 
Akers,  the  Jailer  searched  him,  I  went  in  his  cell  to  talk  to  him,  &  then 
gave  him  his  Bevolver  again,  &  some  caps  &  amunition  I  told  him  in  case 
the  jail  was  attackted,  to  remain,  back  in  his  cell,  &  make  every  shot  tell 
I  told  him  that  as  soon  as  I  heard  one  shot  that  I  would  be  among  them 
with  some  thirty  or  more  armed  men  and  would  commence  firing  on  any 
mob,  that  would  attempt  to  take  him  out  of  Jail  to  mob  him  he  remained 
there  some  three  days  before  E.  W.  White,  G.  W.  Miller  &  my  self  had  him 
brought  out  of  jail  on  a  writ  of  Habeas  corpus,  before  Mr  Roberts,  the 
Probate  judge  who  was  a  Republican,  but  a  man  that  was  strictly  Honest, 
&  Honorable  who  Examined  the  evidence  against  W.  C.  Quantrell.  He 
asked  Tom  Akers  if  he  had  any  farther  Evidence  against  W.  C.  Quantrell 
or  any  other  authority  for  Holding  W.  C.  Quantrell  a  Prisoner.  He  replied 
that  he  had  not.  Turning  to  Quantrell  he  said  to  him,  you  are  discharged 
from  custody  &  at  Liberty  to  go  where  you  pleas.  W.  C.  Quantrell  & 
Myself  immediately  went  to  the  Hotel,  which  was  kept  by  Col  Torrey. 
where,  a  hasty  Lunch,  of  cake,  Bread  &  butter,  &  sandwich's,  was  hastily 
Prepared  by  the  Ladies  of  the  Hotel  &  col  Torrey.  While  hurriedly  filling 
his  over  coat  Pocket  with  them  said  to  W.  C.  Quantrell  you  well  know  that 
you  are  always  welcome,  &  that  we  are  allways  glad  to  see  you.  But  you 
see,  What  danger  you  have  incurred.  What  trouble  you  have  got  your 
friends  in  to  in  assisting  you.  and  now  do  not  come  back  here  any  more 
until  this  matter  is,  all  settled  &  come  here  no  more,  until  You  can  come 
with  out  danger  to  your  self  &  Friends,  he  promised  to  follow  his  advice. 

I  had  his  fine  Black  Hors  fed,  saddled  &  Bridled  &  wating  for  him. 
I  gave  him  directions  which  road  to  take  to  avoid  meeting  Snyders  men, 
who  were  guarding  the  Road  to  West  Point  Missouri  Expecting  to,  meet 
him  &  Recapture  him  on  his  Way  to  Missouri  W.  C.  Quantrell  mounted 
his  horse,  &  went  out  of  town  in  a  Lope,  Waving  his  Revolver  over  his 
head  &  was  soon  lost  to  view  He  arrived  at  Squiresville  some  14  Miles 
distant  in  less  than  two  hours  after,  leaving  Town  &  went  [to]  Little 
Santa  Fee  &  Missouri  the  same  evening 

Following  is  a  certified  transcript  of  the  records  of  Miami  county  in 
this  proceeding  against  Quantrill: 

A. 

STATE  OF  KANSAS  ) 
COUNTY  OF  LYKIN8  j  SS' 

To  any  Constable  of  Stanton  Township  in  said  County  Greeting: 
Whereas  W.  C.  Quantrill  has  this  day  been  brought  before  me  on  a 


192          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

warrant  issued  from  my  office  this  26th  day  of  March  1861,  charged  with 
the  crime  of  Larceny  on  the  Oath  of  Eli  Snyder,  and  whereas  the  Defendant 
W.  C.  Quantrill  this  day  waives  his  examination  before  me  this  26th  day 
of  March  1861. 

These  are  therefore  to  command  you  to  take  the  Body  of  the  said 
W.  C.  Quantrill  and  him  safely  keep  and  deliver  him  forthwith  without 
delay  to  the  Keeper  of  the  County  Jail  in  the  City  of  Paola,  there  to 
remain  until  discharged  by  due  course  of  Law. 

Witness  my  hand  and  seal  this  26th  day  of  March  1861. 

Samuel  H.  Houser 

Justice  of  Peace 

I,  Samuel  H.  Houser,  a  Justice  of  the  Peace,  certify  that  the  above 
warrant  is  a  true  copy  of  an  original  one  filed  in  my  office,  this  April  2, 
1861. 

Samuel  H.  Houser 

Justice  of  Peace 
STATE  OP  KANSAS    )  ot 
LYKINS  COUNTY         \  8S" 

Before  me,  Samuel  H.  Houser  a  Justice  of  the  Peace  for  said  County 
personally  came  Eli  Snyder  who  being  duly  sworn  according  to  law  deposeth 
and  saith  that  on  or  about  the  March  1st  1861  that  there  was  a  horse 
stolen  near  Sumner  in  this  State,  also  one  horse  stolen  near  Atchison  in 
this  State,  and  different  other  crimes  have  been  committed,  and  this 
deponent  says  or  does  verily  believe  that  one  Quantrill  is  guilty  of  the  facts 
charged,  and  further  this  deponent  saith  that  according  to  good  authority 
and  report,  the  Sheriff  of  Lykins  County  has  a  writ  at  this  time  for  the 
above  named  Quantrill. 

Sworn  to  and  subscribed  before  me  this  26th  day  of  March  1861. 

Samuel  H.  Houser 

Justice  of  Peace 
Eli  Snyder. 

I,  Samuel  H.  Houser,  a  Justice  of  the  Peace,  certify  that  the  above 
Affidavit  is  a  true  copy  of  an  original  one  filed  in  my  office  April  2,  1861. 

Samuel  H.  Houser 

Justice  of  Peace 
A. 

STATE  OF  KANSAS 
COUNTY  OP  LYKINS 

TO  ANY  CONSTABLE  OF  SAID  COUNTY. 

Whereas  complaint  has  been  made  before  me,  Samuel  H.  Houser, 
Justice  of  the  Peace,  in  and  for  the  County  of  Lykins  upon  the  oath  of 
Eli  Snyder  that  one  Quantrill,  late  of  the  County  of  Lykins,  did  on  or 
about  March  1st  1861  steal  and  take  from  the  owner  near  Sumner  in  this 
State,  one  horse,  and  different  other  crimes  that  are  alleged  to  the  charge  of 
said  Quantrill,  and  according  to  good  report,  the  Sheriff  of  this  County  has 
at  this  time  a  writ  for  said  Quantrill.  These  are  therefore  to  command  you 
to  take  the  said  Quantrill,  if  he  can  be  found  in  your  State  and  take  and 
safely  keep  the  said  Quantrill,  so  that  you  have  his  body  forth  with  before 
me  to  answer  the  said  complaint  according  to  Law. 

Given  under  my  hand  this  26th  day  of  March  1861. 

Samuel  H.  Houser 

Justice  of  Peace 

I,  S.  H.  Houser,  a  Justice  of  the  Peace,  certify  that  the  within  com- 
mittment is  a  true  copy  of  the  original. 

April  2,  1861.  Samuel  H.  Houser  J.  P. 


88. 


QUANTRILL'S  ESCAPE 


193 


Cost. 

docket                   $ 

10 

oath 

10 

warrant 

50 

3   papers 
trying 
order 

30 
75 
35 

mittim. 

35 

docket 

25 

$2. 

70 

Const.  Cost 

Mileage  to 
Bennings 
Ser.  •warrant 

20 
50 

Sum.    13   mentto 

take    Quantril        3  . 
Taken  to  Jail 

25 
50 

Sum.   3  men 

75 

copy 
Milage                    1  . 

10 
10 

$6. 

40 

I,  Samuel  H. 
a  true  copy  of  an 


Eli  Snyder  for  State. 

Before  me,  Samuel  H.  Houser  a  Justice  of  the  Peace 
for  said  Lykins  County,  personally  came  Eli  Snyder 
who  being  duly  sworn  according  to  law  says  there 
was  a  warrant  issued  to  Constable  E.  B.  Jurd  on 
26th  day  of  March  1861.  Warrant  served  on  pris- 
oner in  custody. 

E.  B.  Jurd  Const. 


March  26th  1861 

Case  called.  Prisoner  waived  the  right  of  examin- 
ation and  was  committed  to  jail  in  the  custody  of 
E.  B.  Jurd  Constable  to  await  further  trial  accord- 
ing to  Law. 

Samuel  H.  Houser 

Justice  of  Peace 

March  30,  1861.     Mittimus  Returned.     Prisoner  de- 
livered to  the  jailer,  also  a  copy  of  Mittimus.  Given 
under  my  hand  this  1st  day  of  April,  1861. 
8.  H.  Houser 

Justice  of  Peace 

Houser,  a  Justice  of  the  Peace,  certify  that  the  within 
original  transcript  of  my  docket.     April  2nd  1861. 
Samuel  H.  Houser 

Just.  Peace. 


TO  THE  HONORABLE  THOMAS  ROBERTS  PROBATE  JUDGE  WITH- 
IN AND  FOR  LYKINS  COUNTY,  STATE  OP  KANSAS,  GREET- 
ING: 

Your  petitioner  W.  C.  Quantrill  would  most  respectfully  represent  to 
your  Honor  that  he  is  unlawfully  imprisoned  or  restrained  of  his  liberty  by 
Thomas  Akers,  Jailer  in  the  jail  in  the  City  of  Paola,  County  and  State 
first  above  mentioned,  and  your  petitioner  W.  C.  Quantrill  further  avers 
that  on  or  about  the  26th  day  of  March  A.  D.  1861  upon  the  oath  of  one 
Eli  Snyder  before  S.  H.  Houser,  a  Justice  in  Stanton  Township,  County 
and  State  aforesaid,  your  petitioner  was  arrested  and  brought  before  the 
said  Houser  on  a  charge  of  horse  stealing  and  other  crimes  alleged  to  have 
been  committed  on  or  about  of  March  A.  D.  1861  at  or  near  Sumner  and 
Atchison  in  this  State.  Your  petitioner  further  states  that  the  said  arrest 
was  malicious,  false  and  illegal,  and  in  proof  of  this  would  state  First. 
That  the  places  designated  in  said  Affidavit  are  not  in  the  bounds  of  this, 
Lykins  County.  Second,  That  the  said  Justice  of  the  Peace,  8.  H.  Houser 
had  no  right  to  hear  an  examination,  and  commit  the  said  Quantrill,  not 
having  jurisdiction  in  this  said  case.  Third.  That  the  said  Justice  had 
no  power  to  waive  an  examination.  Fourth.  That  the  said  Justice  erred 
in  not  fixing  bail  in  the  said  case.  Fifth.  That  the  said  Affidavit  does  not 
charge  your  petitioner  with  having  stolen  any  particular  horse  nor  from 
whom  stolen,  nor  whether  there  was  property  or  ownership  in  the  said 
property.  Sixth.  And  for  other  good  and  sufficient  reasons  set  forth  by 
the  papers  here  to  attached  marked  (A)  and  made  a  part  of  this  petition, 
the  same  being  copies  of  the  Affidavit,  Warrant  and  other  papers  in  the 
case  under  the  hand  of  the  said  S.  H.  Houser  J.  P.  Wherefore  your  peti- 
tioner prays  that  he  may  be  released  from  said  confinement,  and  restored 
13 


194          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

to  his  liberty  by  your  Honor.  Seventh.  And  that  he  further  states  that 
on  the  day  set  apart  for  his  examination  before  the  said  S.  H.  Houser, 
Justice  of  the  Peace,  that  the  reason  of  his  waiving  his  right  to  investiga- 
tion and  examination,  that  an  armed  -body  of  men  surrounded  the  said 
prisoner  and  the  Court,  and  that  he  was  under  duress  and  great  bodily 
harm,  and  even  death  itself  was  threatened.  Eighth.  The  Affidavit  in 
the  above  entitled  cause  sets  forth  no  sufficient  cause  for  a  warrant  to 
issue  against  the  said  Petitioner.  All  of  which  he  respectfully  submits. 

W.  C.  Quantrill 

The  affiant  W.  C.  Quantrill  being  duly  sworn  says  that  the  facts  set 
forth  in  the  foregoing  petition  is  true  to  the  best  of  his  knowledge  and 
belief. 

W.  C.  Quantrill 

Sworn  to  before  me  and  subscribed  in  my  presence  this  2nd  day  of 
April  A.  D.  1861. 

Seal  Thomas  Eoberts 

Probate  Judge. 

Now  on  this  3rd  day  of  April  A.  D.  1861  comes  W.  C.  Quantrill  and 
files  his  petition  for  a  writ  of  Habeas  Corpus  to  reclaim  the  body  of  the 
said  W.  C.  Quantrill  from  the  custody  of  Thomas  Akers,  jailer  of  said 
Lykins  County,  State  of  Kansas,  for  the  reason  that  the  said  W.  C.  Quan- 
trill is  illegally  detained  by  the  said  jailer,  and  restrained  of  his  liberty 
contrary  to  law.  Whereupon  a  writ  of  Habeas  Corpus  was  duly  issued  to 
said  jailer  and  W.  L.  Potter  authorized  to  serve  the  same.  Now  comes 
Thomas  Akers,  jailer  of  Lykins  County  and  returns  the  above  writ  with  the 
body  of  the  above  W.  C.  Quantrill.  It  appearing  to  the  Court  the  offence 
for  which  the  said  W.  C.  Quantrill  was  committed  to  the  custody  of  the 
said  jailer  was  one  of  which  the  said  Samuel  H.  Houser,  Justice  of  the 
Peace  of  said  County  had  no  jurisdiction.  The  jurisdiction  being  in  a 
Justice  of  County  where  said  offence  was  alleged  to  have  been  committed. 
Ordered  and  adjudged  that  the  said  W.  C.  Quantrill  be  discharged  from 
further  custody  of  the  jailer  of  said  Lykins  County,  and  he  is  hereby 
discharged  from  the  same. 

Thomas  Eoberts 

Probate  Judge. 
STATE  OF  KANSAS     )  m 
LYKINS  COUNTY         \  ss' 

To  Thomas  Akers,  jailer  of  said  County,  You  are  hereby  commanded 
to  have  the  body  of  W.  C.  Quantrill,  now  imprisoned  and  restrained  of  his 
liberty  by  you,  by  virtue  of  a  Mittamus  issued  by  one  Samuel  H.  Houser, 
a  Justice  of  the  Peace  in  and  for  said  County,  in  the  State  of  Kansas, 
together  with  the  time  and  cause  of  said  imprisonment  and  detention  before 
me  the  undersigned  Judge  of  the  Probate  Court  in  and  for  the  County  of 
Lykins  and  State  of  Kansas  without  delay  to  do  and  receive  what  shall 
then  and  there  be  considered  cencerning  the  person  imprisoned. 

In  testimony  whereof  I,  Thomas  Eoberts,  Judge  of  the  Probate  Court 
in  and  for  said  County  of  Lykins,  and  State  of  Kansas  have  hereunto 
set  my  hand  and  affixed  my  official  seal  at  Paola  this  3rd  day  of  April 
A.  D.  1861. 

Thomas  Eoberts 

Seal  Probate  Judge. 

I  hereby  authorize  W.  L.  Potter  to  serve  the  within  process. 

Thomas  Eoberts 

Probate  Judge. 


QUANTRILL'S  ESCAPE  195 

Received  the  within  writ  by  delivering  it  to  Thos.  Akera  at  15  minutes 
past  ten  o'clock  A.  M.  of  the  2nd  day  of  April  1861. 

W.  L.  Potter  Ms. 

Received  the  within  writ  at  17  minutes  past  ten  o'clock  A.  M.  of  the 
2nd  day  of  April  1861.  Executed  by  bringing  the  prisoner  W.  C.  Quantrill 
into  the  custody  of  the  Court. 

Thos.   Akers 

Jailer 

THE  STATE  OF  KANSAS  f>  PRrmATTr  rnTniT 

COUNTY  OF  MIAMI        (  SS< 

I,  Thos.  Hodges,  sole  Judge  and  ex-officio  Clerk  of  the  Probate  Court, 
within  and  for  the  County  aforesaid,  do  hereby  certify  the  foregoing  to  be 
a  true  Copy  of  Habeas  Corpus  proceedings  in  the  matter  of  the  State  of 
Kansas  vs  W.  C.  Quantrill,  as  the  same  appears  from  the  records  of  said 
Court 

IN  TESTIMONY  WHEREOF,  I,  have  hereunto  set 
my  hand  and  affixed  the  Seal  of  said  Court  at 
Paola  Kansas  this  llth  day  of  March  A.  D.  1908. 
Probate  Judge  Thos.  Hodges, 

SEAL  Probate  Judge  and 

Miami  County,  Kansas  ex-officio  Clerk. 


THE  STATE  OF  KANSAS  ) 
COUNTY  OF  MIAMI    \  8S' 

I,  Thos.  Hodges,  sole  Judge  of  the  Probate  Court,  within  and  for 
said  County,  the  same  being  a  Court  of  Law  and  Record,  hereby  certify 
that  the  signature  attached  to  the  above  certificate,  purporting  to  be  that 
of  Thos.  Hodges  is  his  genuine  signature,  and  that  he  was  at  the  time 
thereof  ex-officio  Clerk  of  said  Probate  Court,  and  as  such  full  faith  and 
credit  are  due  his  acts,  and  that  the  attestation  of  said  clerk  is  in  due  form 
of  law,  and  by  the  proper  officer. 

WITNESS  my  hand  and  the  seal  of  said  Court,  at 

Paola,  Kansas,  this  llth  day  of  March,  1908. 
Probate  Judge  Thos.  Hodges, 

SEAL  Probate  Judge. 

Miami  County,  Kansas. 


CHAPTER  XIV 

QUANTRILL  BECOMES  A   GUERRILLA 

QUANTRILL  returned  to  Jackson  county  much  discour- 
aged. Those  who  saw  him  in  those  distressed  days  say 
he  was  despondent.  His  efforts  to  stimulate  business  had 
terminated  disastrously.  He  realized  that  he  was  lucky  to 
escape  from  Captain  Snyder  with  his  life,  and  for  this  great 
good  fortune  he  was  duly  thankful.  In  his  revengeful  heart,  how- 
ever, he  treasured  his  humiliation  to  another  day  when  he  might 
exact  a  bloody  retribution.  His  experience  had  demonstrated 
that  his  future  field  could  not  be  in  Kansas  unless  he  crossed 
the  border  with  an  adequate  force.  But  his  operations  had 
been  conducted  hitherto  with  few  men.  Skulking  like  a  craven 
about  cow-pens,  horse-corrals,  and  isolated  negro-quarters  along 
the  skirts  of  Missouri  had  been  his  ideal  life,  and  the  possibility 
of  a  command  had  not  occurred  to  him.  The  future  appeared 
black,  barren,  fruitless.  From  Kansas  he  seemed  shut  out  for- 
ever, and  he  could  no  longer  prey  upon  the  Missourians.  If 
he  should  steal  slaves  could  he  escape  with  them?  In  this 
dilemma  he  had  no  intention  of  going  about  any  honest  work, 
and  it  began  to  appear  that  in  exchanging  Kansas  for  Missouri 
he  had  made  a  poor  bargain,  even  though  the  blood  of  three  men 
cried  from  the  ground  in  his  exultant  ears  as  the  result  of  it. 
Such  characters  can  only  live  and  thrive  in  troublous  times, 
in  disrupted  conditions,  in  a  disturbed  state,  in  a  disordered 
society.  While  the  times  were  out  of  joint  indeed,  so  novel  and 
unusual  were  they  that  the  possibilities  in  his  lines  did  not  reveal 
themselves  sufficiently  for  him  to  perceive  them.  Missouri  was 
just  entering  on  that  vacillating  course  which  made  her  ridicu- 
lous in  the  eyes  of  both  the  North  and  the  South  and  ended  in 
humiliation.  From  the  pleasant  pursuit  of  pushing  slavery  into 
other  countries  she  was  compelled  to  bestir  herself  to  save  the 
ignominious  institution  within  her  own  bounds.  Atchison  and 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  A  GUERRILLA  197 

other  leaders  of  border-ruffian  hordes  headed  slave  caravans  to 
Texas  and  Louisiana.  From  crusaders  for  the  extension  of 
human  slavery  they  became  exiles  for  a  forlorn  hope. 

In  such  times  petty  characters  are  swept  aside  and  forgot- 
ten. Quantrill  was  stranded  and  overlooked.  Realizing  his 
insignificance,  he  cast  about  him  to  see  if  perchance  there  might 
not  appear  some  safe  port,  be  it  ever  so  foul  and  disreputable, 
where  he  could  furl  his  sail  and  outride  the  storm.  He  renewed 
his  visits  to  the  home  of  Morgan  Walker.  In  his  extremity  there 
was  an  attraction  there  which  he  could  not  resist  and  upon  which 
he  fixed  his  hopes  —  a  daughter  who  had  been  divorced  from 
her  husband  because  of  her  own  shortcomings.1  Indeed,  some 
have  believed  that  it  was  on  account  of  Nannie  (or  Anna) 
Walker  Slaughter  that  Quantrill  planned  and  executed  the 

i  In  relation  to  Quantrill  and  the  daughter  of  Morgan  Walker,  it  de- 
velops that  Walker  had  a  daughter  named  Nannie  (or  Anna).  She  married 
a  very  respectable  and  good  man  named  Slaughter,  who  was  a  merchant  at 
Blue  Springs.  He  is  also  said  to  have  been  a  physician.  She  was  a  fine- 
looking  woman.  But  for  her  nose,  which  was  crooked  and  gross,  giving  her 
a  sensual  look,  she  would  have  been  beautiful.  Her  form  is  said  to  have 
been  fine.  There  was  a  doctor  boarding  with  Slaughter.  There  came  a 
very  cold  spell  of  weather  one  winter.  In  the  room  of  the  physician  there 
was  no  fireplace,  and  she  made  a  bed  upon  the  floor  in  the  room  of  herself 
and  husband  where  there  was  a  fire  in  which  the  doctor  was  to  sleep  until 
the  weather  moderated.  One  night  Slaughter  was  awakened  by  his  wife's 
getting  back  into  bed  with  him,  and  his  suspicions  were  aroused;  but  he 
said  nothing.  The  following  night  he  feigned  sleep,  and  his  wife  left 
his  bed  and  lay  down  upon  that  occupied  by  the  physician,  remaining  there 
a  long  time.  Slaughter,  when  convinced  of  his  wife's  infidelity,  arose  to 
kill  the  doctor,  but  that  worthy  escaped.  He  at  once  obtained  a  divorce 
from  his  wife,  and  she  returned  to  the  home  of  her  father.  This  was  a 
short  time  before  the  raid  on  Morgan  Walker's  home  by  Quantrill  and  his 
companions.  She  had  a  number  of  lovers,  among  them  George  Todd  and 
Quantrill.  In  April,  1862,  Joe 'Vaughan  married  her.  He  took  her  to 
Clay  county,  or  to  some  place  north  of  the  Missouri  river,  and  kept  her 
there  until  after  the  close  of  the  war.  He  was  never  again  with  Quantrill 
nor  with  the  Confederate  army.  Morgan  Walker  died  about  the  close  of 
the  war,  and  his  daughter  inherited  her  part  of  his  land,  which  she  sold, 
and  with  the  proceeds  set  up  a  bawdy  house  at  Baxter  Springs.  After 
receiving  her  money  she  told  Vaughan  she  had  no  further  use  for  him  and 
made  him  leave.  She  was  a  woman  after  Quantrill 's  own  heart,  and  it  may 
be  that  some  acquaintance  with  her  caused  him  to  plan  the  Morgan  Walker 
raid  as  a  means  of  winning  her  to  himself. 


198          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

treacherous  plot  to  betray  his  companions  to  death.  She  was  to 
become  heir  to  a  large  tract  of  land,  slaves,  and  money,  and 
these  things  appealed  to  Quantrill.  To  his  mind,  the  consum- 
mation of  such  betrayal  would  make  him  a  hero  in  the  eyes  of 
women,  and  with  this  particular  woman  he  may  have  been 
correct  in  his  judgment.  But  even  this  debasing  design  failed 
him  and  came  to  naught. 

In  the  spring  of  1861  Gill  moved  to  Texas,  and  Quantrill, 
in  desperation  and  overflowing  with  resentment  for  what  he 
termed  the  ingratitude  of  the  Missourians,  went  there  with  him. 
That  country,  however,  did  not  seem  to  please  him,  and  he  soon 
left  it  and  went  to  the  Cherokee  Nation.  The  irresponsible  life 
of  the  Indian  suited  Quantrill.  In  the  land  of  the  Cherokees 
he  lived  with  Joel  Mayes,  a  thrifty  and  prosperous  man  of  only 
part  Cherokee  blood,  and  who,  many  years  after  the  war,  was 
elected  Head  Chief  of  the  Nation.  Mayes  espoused  the  cause 
of  the  Confederacy  and  was  captain  of  a  company  or  band  of 
Cherokees  who  followed  General  Ben.  McCulloch  to  Missouri. 
Quantrill  was  with  this  company,  but  it  is  not  known  that  he  was 
a  member  of  it,  though  he  always  claimed  to  have  fought  witlTit 
at  the  battle  of  Wilson  Creek.  The  Indian  mode  of  warfare  had 
a  great  charm  for  Quantrill,  and  later  he  copied  it  almost 
entirely,  even  to  the  custom  of  scalping  the  dead.  At  Wilson 
Creek  the  Indians  hung  about  the  skirts  of  the  battle  and  gath- 
ered all  manner  of  plunder  and  army-drift,  including  not  a  few 
scalps,  in  all  of  which  Quantrill  participated. 

Quantrill  deserted  his  Indian  friends  after  the  battle  of 
Wilson  Creek  and  followed  General  Price  north  to  the  Missouri 
river.  Why  he  did  this  can  only  be  conjectured,  for  the  Indian 
life  was  to  his  liking.  It  can  be  accounted  for,  perhaps,  by 
remembering  his  infatuation  for  the  fallen  daughter  of  Morgan 
Walker.  Women  of  such  character  ever  had  great  influence 
over  him,  even  where  there  was  no  property  consideration 
involved.  And  the  tightening  of  army  rules  and  the  enforce- 
ment of  discipline  as  General  Price's  army  assumed  a  higher 
organization  served  to  dispel  the  Indian  forces  which  had  oper- 
ated with  it,  and  while  he  did  not  relish  the  strict  routine  of  the 
life  of  the  regular  soldier,  Quantrill  saw  in  it  numerous  pos- 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  A  GUERRILLA  199 

sibilities  in  the  line  of  his  inclinations.  Unlimited  license 
attracted  him.  The  unsettling  of  society  along  the  border,  due 
to  the  war,  and  which  he  now  began  to  perceive,  held  illim- 
itable charms  for  him,  a  foic^taste  of  which  he  had  enjoyed  in 
the  capacities  of  Jayhawker  and  border-ruffian. 

Quantrill  is  identified  in  the  battle  of  the  Drywood,  east  of 
Fort  Scott,  September  2,  1861.  Colonel  Moonlight  there  made 
a  daring  attack  on  the  Confederate  main  body,  the  audacity  of 
it  alone  saving  him  from  destruction,  for  the  enemy  supposed 
he  was  supported  by  the  whole  Union  force.  Turning  sharply 
to  the  north  out  of  a  deep  ravine  in  pursuit  of  scattered  pickets 
or  scouts,  he  suddenly  rode  out  on  the  prairie  in  front  of  the 
enemy's  army.  He  hurried  forward  a  small  cannon  he  had  with 
him  and  commanded  it  to  open  fire  upon  the  batteries  of  the 
Confederates.  The  gunner  made  two  shots,  neither  one  effective. 
In  disgust  Moonlight  sprang  from  his  horse,  wheeled  the  gun 
about,  aimed  it  himself,  and  fired.  The  shot  struck  a  Confeder- 
ate gun  which  was  pouring  out  grape,  dismounting  it  and  send- 
ing it  turning  end  over  end  several  yards  into  the  ranks  marshaled 
behind.  Then,  before  the  astonished  enemy  could  recover  from  the 
surprise  of  the  whole  proceeding,  Moonlight  turned  and  marched 
his  company  away  unmolested.  Quantrill  was  near  this  dis- 
mounted gun  and  afterwards  described  the  occurrence  to  a  cap- 
tive Union  soldier,  one  who  had  stood  by  Moonlight  at  the  time.2 

2  Lieutenant  Eeuben  A.  Eandlett,  Company  A,  Fifth  Kansas,  who 
lives,  1908,  in  Topeka.  Kandlett  described  the  action  of  Colonel  Moonlight 
to  the  author.  He  was  standing  near  the  gun  and  saw  it  aimed  by  Moon- 
light and  witnessed  the  destruction  of  the  enemy's  gun  by  the  shot. 
Eandlett  was  afterwards  captured  by  Quantrill  at  Aubry  and  retained 
by  him  for  several  weeks,  being  finally  released,  an  account  of  which  will 
appear  later  in  this  volume. 

In  a  conversation  with  Cyrus  Leland,  Jr.,  the  author  was  told  that 
Colonel  Moonlight  had  been  an  artillery  officer  in  the  regular  army.  At 
Osceola,  Moonlight  and  Colonel  Wear  sat  discussing  the  merits  of  artillery. 
The  court-house  was  in  plain  view  of  them.  Moonlight  pointed  to  a  small 
howitzer  and  said  that  with  it  he  could  put  a  ball  between  two  windows 
in  the  building,  which  he  designated.  Colonel  Wear  doubted  it  and  Moon- 
light wheeled  the  gun  into  position  and  fired  it,  hitting  the  mark.  Colonel 
Wear  said  it  was  an  accident.  Moonlight  designated  two  other  windows 


200          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Quantrill  was  with  Price  as  a  nondescript  at  the  siege  and 
battles  of  Lexington.  He  is  described  as  having  worn  there  at 
the  siege  a  red  shirt  and  a  waving  black  plume,  inspired,  doubt- 
less, by  his  association  with  the  Indians.  At  Lexington  energy 
and  bravery  have  been  attributed  to  him.s 

In  the  retreat  of  the  Confederate  troops,  Quantrill,  it  is 
said,  followed  General  Price  as  far  south  as  the  Osage,  where  his 
taste  for  the  life  of  a  soldier  in  the  regular  service  seems  to  have 
vanished  altogether.  He  turned  back  and  soon  arrived  once 
more  in  Jackson  county.  Having  been  cast  and  schooled  in 
petty  villainies,  he  could  not  comprehend  the  broad  principles 
for  which  the  Confederacy  contended.  To  him  warfare  was 
nothing  without  opportunity  for  assassination  and  plunder.  He 
again  assumed  the  role  of  detective  and  soon  reported  to  Mor- 
gan Walker  that  some  people  from  Kansas  were  robbing  citizens 
in  wfcat  was  then  known  as  the  Stone  neighborhood,  four  miles 
north  of  Blue  Springs.  Andrew  J.  Walker  (or  "Andy"  Walker, 
as  he  was  called)  raised  eleven  men,  of  whom  Quantrill  was  one, 
and  went  to  find  the  marauders,  who  were  traced  to  the  house  of 
a  citizen  named  De  Witt,  which  they  had  just  left  when  their 
pursuers  arrived.  They  were  followed  to  the  farm  'of  Strawder 
Stone,  where  they  had  robbed  the  house,  in  doing  which  one  of 
them  had  struck  Mrs.  Stone  on  the  head  with  a  pistol  for  her 
sharp  and  righteous  reproof.  Walker  and  his  party  came  up 
with  them  as  they  were  coming  out  of  the  house  of  one  Thomp- 
son, a  quarter  of  a  mile  beyond  Stone's,  mounting  to  depart. 

between  which  he  would  put  a  ball,  which,  when  he  did,  convinced  Colonel 
Wear  of  his  splendid  ability  as  an  artillery  officer. 

3  In  his  Noted  Guerrillas,  Major  Edwards  has  the  following: 

As  a  private  he  served  with  conspicuous  daring  in  the  battles  of 
Carthage,  Wilson's  Creek,  and  Lexington,  but  especially  at  the  latter  place 
did  his  operations  in  presence  of  the  enemy  attract  attention.  Mounted 
there  on  a  splendid  horse,  armed  with  a  Sharpe's  carbine  and  four  navy 
revolvers,  for  uniform  a  red  shirt,  and  for  oriflame  a  sweeping  black 
plume,  he  advanced  with  the  farthest,  fell  back  with  the  last,  and  was  always 
cool,  deadly,  and  omnipresent.  General  Price  —  himself  notorious  for  be- 
ing superbly  indifferent  under  fire  —  remarked  his  bearing  and  caused 
mention  to  me  made  of  it  most  favorably. 

General  Price  made  no  mention  of  Quantrill  in  his  official  report  of 
the  battle  of  Lexington.  The  notice  above  referred  to  has  not  been  found. 

Quantrill  was  not  in  the  battle  of  Carthage.  When  it  was  fought 
he  was  yet  in  Texas  or  the  Cherokee  Nation. 


201 

Walker  and  his  party  there  charged  them,  killing  the  man  who 
had  struck  Mrs.  Stone,  and  wounding  two  others,  both  of  whom 
died  at  Independence  later.  Walker  says  these  marauders 
burned  the  houses  of  both  Stoilc  and  Thompson,  but  this  is  not 
confirmed.  They  must  have  been  acting  under  authority,  for  the 
civil  officers  took  note  of  the  matter,  and  both  Stone  and  Thomp- 
son were  arrested  for  murder  and  arraigned  before  Judge  High- 
tower.  Quantrill  appeared  before  the  justice  and  made  affidavit 
that  he  had  himself  done  the  killing,  and  that  neither  Stone  nor 
Thompson  were  guilty,  and  they  were  released;  but  it  does  not 
appear  that  Quantrill  was  detained  in  custody.  The  soldier 
killed  by  Quantrill  at  Stone's  was  the  first  Federal  soldier  killed 
in  Jackson  county,  Mo.,  in  the  Civil  War. 

This  occurrence  seems  to  have  put  Quantrill  forward  mate- 
rially. He  became  the  ruling  spirit  of  the  nebula  which  devel- 
oped later  into  his  guerrilla  band.  A  deserter  from  Price's 
army  named  Searcy  arrived  in  Jackson  county  about  Christmas, 
1861,  and  began  to  rob  citizens.  Quantrill  and  his  men  captured 
him,  though  not  because  of  the  robberies  of  which  he  was  guilty, 
but  because  he  had  attempted  to  shoot  Quantrill.  The  band 
took  Searcy  to  the  Little  Blue  and  there  hung  him.  From  long 
practice  and  its  frequent  perpetration  murder  was  becoming 
easy  to  Quantrill,  and  he  foresaw  a  rich  harvest  in  that  field  for 
the  future.* 

Probably  the  first  real  contest  with  an  armed  force  engaged 

4  The  statements  of  Andrew  J.  Walker  are  the  principal  authority  for 
the  account  of  Quantrill 's  operations  after  deserting  Price  at  the  Osage 
and  his  return  to  Jackson  county.  In  his  letter  of  February  3,  1883,  al- 
ready referred  to,  he  says: 

He  stayed  a  part  of  the  balance  of  the  winter  at  Mark  Gill's,  was 
back  and  forth  to  my  father's  several  times  during  the  winter.  He  went 
with  Gill  to  Texas  in  the  spring  of  1861;  but  in  the  summer  returned  to 
the  Cherokee  Nation  and  stayed  a  time  with  a  Cherokee  named  Joel  Mayes. 
He  staid  there  until  the  battle  of  Springfield,  Mo.,  between  Generals 
Lyon  and  McCulloch.  Sometime  after  that  he  returned  to  my  fathers.  I 
think  it  was  about  the  first  of  October,  1861.  Shortly  after  he  returned, 
some  Kansas  men  came  into  the  neighborhood  robbing.  I  got  11  men  to- 
gether, Quantrill  with  me  and  we  started  on  the  hunt  of  them.  Coming 
onto  them  we  fired  into  them.  It  was  near  old  Mr.  Thompson's  house  and 
they  accused  Thompson  and  Stone  of  the  affair.  They  burned  their  houses 
and  taking  them  prisoners  were  going  to  kill  them;  but  Quantrill  to  save 
them  from  death  went  to  a  Justice  of  the  Peace  and  made  oath  that  it  was 
he  who  did  it  and  that  neither  Thompson  or  Stone  knew  any  thing  of  it. 


202          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

in  by  Quantrill  and  his  men  was  in  Independence.  It  occurred 
shortly  after  the  Strawder  Stone  affair.  In  the  Rush  Bottom 
there  was  organized  a  band  of  Homeguards.  These  were  in 
Independence  one  day,  and  Quantrill  and  his  men  rode  into  the 


The  Union  troops  then  attempted  to  catch  him.  He  then  began  his 
Guerilla  warfare  and  became  chief  of  the  band. 

In  his  letter  dated  Feb.  22,  1883,  Walker  says: 

The  time  I  spoke  of  firing  on  those  Kansas  men,  it  was  in  Missouri 
about  three  miles  from  where  I  lived.  Stone  and  Thompson  were  both  old 
settlers  in  Missouri.  I  was  not  with  Quantrill  all  the  time  during  the  war. 
I  went  .south  shortly  after  we  fired  into  that  squad  near  Thompson's  and 
returned  in  the  latter  part  of  the  summer  of  '61  [He  means  1862,  for 
it  was  late  in  the  fall  of  1861  when  he  fired  on  the  Kansas  men  at 
Thompson's.  —  W.  E.  C.]  and  he  went  south  the  same  fall.  I  staid  with 
Capt.  Todd  who  was  leading  officer  that  winter.  Quantrill  returned  in  the 
spring  of  '63  and  I  staid  with  him  till  March  of  '64;  but  he  went  to 
Texas  with  his  men  in  the  fall  of  '63  where  he  stayed  all  winter  on  Eed 
Eiver.  Early  in  1864  he  started  north  for  Missouri.  Myself  and  others 
went  to  Old  Mexico  and  I  never  saw  him  again. 

In  the  Kansas  City  Journal,  May  12,  1888,  there  is  printed  an  inter- 
view with  Walker,  in  which  he  says: 

He  stopped  with  Marcus  Gill,  father  of  Judge  Turner  A.  Gill.  Early 
in  the  spring  of  1861  he  went  to  Texas,  but  he  did  not  stay  there  long. 
He  went  into  the  Cherokee  Nation,  where  he  put  up  with  Joe  Mays,  the 
present  chief.  He  went  with  a  company  of  Cherokees,  of  which  Mays 
was  Captain,  to  Springfield,  and  took  part  in  the  battle  at  that  place,  in 
which  General  Lyon  was  killed.  He  returned  to  Jackson  County  soon  after 
General  Price  captured  General  Mulligan  at  Lexington.  A  week  later  he 
reported  to  my  father  that  some  Kansas  men  were  robbing  people  down  in 
what  is  called  the  Stone  neighborhood,  which  is  four  miles  north  of  Blue 
Springs.  I  got  eleven  men  together  that  day  and  evening.  Quantrill  and 
my  younger  brother  Zaeh  were  away,  but  they  returned  next  morning.  We 
then  got  on  our  horses  and  went  after  the  robbers.  They  had  gone  from 
De  Witt's  house  to  Strawder  Stone's  farm,  where  they  plundered  his  resi- 
dence. Mrs.  Stone  got  angry  at  them  and  talked  pretty  sharp  to  them, 
and  one  of  them  struck  her  on  the  head  with  his  pistol.  We  overtook  them 
just  as  they  were  coming  out  of  Mr.  Thompson's  house,  a  quarter  of  a  mile 
from  Mr.  Stone's  house.  They  had  just  mounted  their  horses.  We  put 
spurs  to  our  horses  when  we  saw  them,  and  as  we  neared  them,  fired, 
killing  the  man  who  struck  Mrs.  Stone  with  his  pistol.  Two  others  were 
wounded,  both  of  whom,  it  was  reported,  died  at  Independence  subsequently. 
We  then  dispersed.  The  next  day  Stone  and  Thompson  were  taken  to 
Independence,  and  'Squire  Hightower  investigated  the  death  of  the  man 
killed.  Quantrill  went  before  the  justice  and  informed  him  that  Stone  and 
Thompson  had  nothing  to  do  with  the  killing,  and  that  he  and  others  were 
responsible.  The  result  was  that  they  were  exonerated.  Then  the  Federals 
in  Independence  wanted  Quantrill,  but  he  kept  out  of  their  way.  I  give 
you  these  details  because  I  want  the  public  to  know  just  how  Quantrill 
began  his  celebrated  career  as  a  guerrilla  and  bushwhacker.  He  was  at 
that  time  just  like  the  rest  of  us.  He  was  content  to  be  one  of  the 
privates.  I  was,  in  fact,  during  the  fight  at  Stone's  farm,  the  leader. 
About  Christmas  of  that  year  George  Searcy  came  into  Jackson  County  and 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  A  GUERRILLA  203 

town  also.  The  Homeguards  took  refuge  in  the  court  house. 
There  was  much^shooting  back  and  forth;  the  Homeguards  run- 
ning out  of  the  building  to  shoot  at  the  guerrillas  as  they  went 
around  a  corner.  In  one  of  these  sorties,  Bill  Haller  captured  a 
Homeguard  named  Smiley  after  he  (Haller)  had  shot  out  every 

began  robbing  Union  men  of  their  horses  and  mules.  Quantrill  had  by  that 
time  become  the  leading  spirit  among  the  guerrillas.  I  had,  in  obedience 
to  the  advice  of  my  father,  returned  to  the  farm,  and  given  up  bushwhack- 
ing. Quantrill  and  his  men  captured  Searcy,  and  took  him  to  a  point  on 
the  Little  Blue  Eiver  and  hanged  him.  I  was  not  a  member  of  the  band 
then,  but  I  went  along  and  helped  hang  Searcy.  He  was  a  rebel  soldier, 
who  had  been  with  Price  in  every  battle  up  to  the  time  he  left  the  com- 
mand. A  short  time  before  his  death  he  waylaid  Quantrill  and  attempted 
to  shoot  him. 

I  went  to  Arkansas  in  February,  1862.  I  got  back  just  before  the 
fight  at  Independence  in  the  summer  of  that  year.  In  the  winter  of  1862 
I  went  to  Colonel  Burris  at  Wyandotte,  and  surrendered  to  him.  He  gave 
me  protection  papers.  But  Colonel  Penick  arrested  me  in  Independence 
and  put  me  in  prison  there.  It  was  all  my  Union  friends  could  do  to  keep 
him  from  hanging  me.  In  order  to  get  out  of  prison  I  joined  the  Federal 
army.  I  was  given  a  furlough  of  ten  days,  but  I  never  returned.  The 
ninth  day  I  was  going  to  Captain  George  Todd's  camp.  I  met  Mathew 
Scott,  a  Union  man  who  had  protected  me.  He  asked  me  where  I  was 
going.  I  told  him  I  was  going  to  join  Captain  Todd's  bushwhackers.  He 
said:  "You  are  joking,  ain't  you?"  I  said,  "No."  "Well",  said  he, 
"I'm  going  to  town  and  they  will  ask  me  about  you,  what  shall  I  tell 
Colonel  Penick t"  "Tell  him  to  go  to  h — 1",  I  replied.  I  went  to  Cap- 
tain Todd's  camp.  He  told  me  to  go  back  home  and  fix  up  quarters  in  the 
brush  and  stay  there  all  winter.  John  Koger,  William  Cox,  Alf  Ketchum 
and  myself  fixed  up  a  board  shanty  in  the  brush.  Colonel  Penick  was 
determined  to  capture  me.  He  searched  every  house  in  the  neighborhood. 
The  second  night  we  were  in  our  shanty  it  snowed  about  four  inches. 
Next  day  the  Federal  scouts  saw  our  smoke  and  that  night  Penick  came 
with  eighty  men  and  surrounded  us.  I  was  stripped  to  my  underclothing 
and  was  barefooted.  Ketchum  ran  out  of  the  shanty  and  was  shot  down. 
I  was  the  next  man  out,  and  I  went  too  fast  for  the  bullets.  Koger  was 
badly  wounded  and  was  captured.  Cox  escaped.  I  went  one  mile  bare- 
footed in  the  snow  to  my  own  house.  I  had  no  clothes  there  to  put  on. 
As  it  happened  there  was  an  old  pair  of  pants  that  had  been  left  by 
Fletch  Taylor,  one  of  Quantrill 's  most  noted  men.  They  only  reached  to 
my  knees.  I  put  them  on.  I  also  put  on  a  boy's  hat,  a  negro  woman's 
shoes  and  a  bed  blanket.  I  then  bade  my  wife  and  child  good-by,  and 
told  the  colored  woman  to  scatter  corn,  when  she  fed  the  hogs,  in  my  tracks 
so  that  they  would  be  blotted  out  in  the  snow.  I  took  the  big  road  to 
within  two  miles  of  Independence.  Two  days  later  I  joined  Captain  Todd. 
He  then  had  ten  men.  We  staid  all  winter  in  the  Lake  hills,  near  Lake 
City. 

Judge  A.  J.  Liddil,  of  Independence,  in  the  Kansas  City  Star,  Jan. 
5,  1905,  describes  Quantrill 's  recovery  of  some  cattle  about  this  time.  He 
also  says  that  Quantrill 's  father  was  suspected  of  having  been  a  counter- 
feiter, and  he  may  have  handled  counterfeit  money  in  his  strolling  capacity 
of  tinker  and  book-peddler.  Judge  Liddil,  in  this  article,  says  that  he 


204          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

• 

load  in  his  pistols.  He  pretended  that  his  pistols  were  loaded 
and  commanded  Smiley  to  surrender,  and  he  did  so.  Quantrill 
could  not  dislodge  the  Homeguards  and  got  three  or  four  of  his 
men  wounded,  among  them  Bennett  Wood. 

Times  began  to  improve  for  Quantrill.  From  this  date  they 
became  more  and  more  to  his  liking.  Disorders  followed  imme- 

was  the  first  leader  of  the  Quantrill  band,  a  claim  others  do  not  admit. 
He  says: 

Quantrill  had  come  to  Independence  some  time  before  I  was  directed 
by  General  Price  and  Governor  Jackson  to  do  what  I  could  to  restore 
order.  All  we  knew  of  him  was  that  he  had  some  reputation  as  a  fighter 
and  his  own  statement  to  me  that  his  family  had  been  compelled  to  leave 
one  of  the  states  because  his  father  was  suspected  of  being  a  counter- 
feiter. 

There  had  been  a  great  deal  of  horse  and  cattle  stealing  going  on 
about  Independence  in  those  troublesome  times,  and  I  had  information 
that  caused  me  to  strongly  suspect  a  gang  of  renegades  from  Kansas.  Just 
as  I  was  preparing  to  start  in  pursuit  of  them,  Quantrill  asked  that  he 
be  allowed  to  join  my  party.  I  consented  and  he  became  one  of  us,  being 
probably  about  the  ninth  to  join.  We  captured  the  leader  of  the  gang 
of  thieves,  with  more  than  a  hundred  horses  and  a  large  number  of 
cattle.  The  thief  we  held  court  on,  I  acting  as  judge  advocate,  and  we 
condemned  him  to  death  and  executed  the  sentence.  The  horses  and  cattle 
were  returned  to  their  owners,  those  who  could  afford  it  being  required  to 
pay  $10  a  head  for  the  return  of  the  horses. 

This  affair  led  to  the  belief,  or  pretended  belief,  on  the  part  of 
Union  soldiers  stationed  in  Kansas  City  that  I  and  my  men  were  in  league 
with  the  horse  thieves,  and  merely  returned  the  stolen  property  as  a  ruse 
for  extorting  money  from  our  neighbors.  As  a  consequence,  we  were  made 
the  object  of  an  attack  some  time  later,  during  which  I  had  a  narrow 
escape  from  capture,  being  shot  at,  I  think,  at  least  500  times.  .  .  .  Be- 
cause of  my  family,  I  was  compelled  to  be  away  from  the  company  a  good 
deal,  and  it  was  decided  to  elect  a  leader  who  should  have  direct  command 
and  plan  our  movements.  The  men  offered  me  the  place,  but  I  declined 
it,  and  their  next  choice  was  Quantrill. 

The  errors  of  Major  Edwards  must  be  still  further  refuted.  He 
says: 

In  May,  1861,  Quantrell  enlisted  in  Captain  Stewart's  company  of 
cavalry,  an  organization  composed  of  hardy  settlers  from  what  was  then 
known  as  the  Kansas  Neutral  Lands. 

As  already  shown,  Quantrill  went  to  Texas  early  in  1861  with  Marcus 
Gill  and  did  not  return  until  he  drifted  in  behind  General  Price's  army. 
So,  this  statement  of  Major  Edwards  is  not  true. 

The  description  of  the  hanging  of  Searcy  is  given  by  Edwards: 

One  Searcy,  claiming  to  be  a  Southern  man,  was  stealing  all  over 
Jackson  county  and  using  violence  here  and  there  when  he  could  not  suc- 
ceed through  persuasion.  Quantrell  swooped  down  upon  him  one  afternoon, 
tried  him  that  night,  and  hung  him  the  next  morning.  Before  they  pulled 
him  up,  he  essayed  to  say  something.  He  commenced:  "Not  so  fast,  gen- 
tlemen! It's  awful  to  die  until  red  hands  have  had  a  chance  to  wash  them- 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  A  GUERRILLA  205 

diately  upon  the  beginning  of  hostilities,  and  where  there  were 
disorder  and  relaxation  of  the  operation  of  law  Quantrill  could 
prosper.  His  course  began  to  define  itself.  The  lowering  of 
the  dark  clouds  of  war  and  strife  was  really  the  lifting  of  the 
mists  for  Quantrill.  His  problem,  as  he  read  it,  consisted  in 
making  the  Missouri  people  believe  that  he  was  devoted  to  their 
cause  from  principle,  hence,  he  was  born  in  Maryland  and  was 
a  Southerner  by  birth.  To  this  fiction  was  added  still  another 
older  brother,  one  who  was  serving  in  Lee's  Army  of  Virginia. 
Quantrill  worked  the  elder-brothers  business  on  the  Missourians 
very  successfully.  These  mythical  brothers  stood  him  in  good 
stead  many  times.  Knowledge  of  them  always  came  through 
women  to  whom  he  paid  attentions.  When  men  made  inquiry 
of  him  he  observed  a  studied  silence.  It  was  easy  to  deceive  a 
devoted  woman,  and  as  a  means  of  spreading  intelligence  an 
enthusiastic  woman  can  never  be  surpassed. 

Then,  too,  QuantrilPs  experience  in  Kansas  had  convinced 
him  that  he  could  no  longer  deal  doubly  —  that  he  must  now 
be  one  thing  or  the  other,  else  he  would  soon  front  a  file  of  grim 
guerrillas  lined  up  to  produce  a  subject  for  a  short  quick  funeral. 
So  he  gave  his  entire  energy  and  talents  to  the  insidious  warfare 
in  which  he  engaged. 

selves."  Here  his  voice  was  strangled  like  the  voice  of  a  man  who  has 
no  saliva  in  his  mouth.  Pour  Guerrillas  dragged  on  the  rope.  There 
seemed  to  be  —  as  his  body  rested  at  last  from  its  contortions  —  the  noise 
as  of  the  waving  of  wings.  Could  it  be  that  Searcy's  soul  was  taking  its 
flight!  Seventy-five  head  of  horses  were  found  in  the  dead  man's  pos- 
session, all  belonging  to  citizens  of  the  county,  and  any  number  of  title 
deeds  to  lands,  notes,  mortgages,  and  private  accounts.  All  were  returned. 

It  will  be  noted  that  Searcy  was  a  member  of  General  Price's  army. 
It  is  very  strange  that  that  admission  is  made.  According  to  all  rules 
he  should  have  been  charged  up  to  Kansas. 

Searcy  was  the  man  of  whom  Judge  Liddil  gave  an  account  in  the 
quotation  from  the  Kansas  City  Star.  It  will  be  observed  that  Judge 
Liddil  does  charge  him  up  to  Kansas. 


CHAPTER  XV 

CONDITIONS  IN  MISSOURI 

TO  UNDERSTAND  properly  the  events  which  transpired 
in  Missouri  after  the  Civil  War  began  something  of  the 
political  conditions  existing  there  must  be  set  down  here. 

By  the  commencement  of  the  year  1862  matters  pertaining 
to  the  war  had  found  permanent  alignment  in  Missouri.  He 
that  was  then  for  the  Union  remained  so,  and  he  that  was  for 
the  Confederacy  stood  for  it  to  the  end.  The  division  was  sharp, 
often  cutting  quite  through  families  —  father  from  son,  brother 
from  brother.  Feeling  reached  a  higher  point  than  in  any  other 
state.  There  was  deeper  and  more  lasting  bitterness  between 
the  people  of  Missouri  than  existed  in  any  other  part  of  the  land. 
Neighbors  with  no  cause  for  quarrel  beyond  Union  and  dis- 
Union  became  enemies  relentless  and  cruel  as  death.  They 
pursued  and  harried  one  another  with  sword  and  torch.  Assas- 
sination was  rampant  for  years.  And  for  why?  The  Missour- 
ian  is  kind,  hospitable,  generous,  tolerant,  open-hearted.  He  is 
charitable  above  all  others.  He  will  ride  through  heat  or  snow 
or  storm  to  relieve  distress.  Bred  on  a  generous  soil,  he  is  broad 
of  shoulder,  a  man  of  affairs,  and  more  generally  of  liberal  for- 
tune than  the  people  of  other  States.  General  intelligence  was 
always  of  a  high  order  in  Missouri.  Missouri  is  the  mother  of  the 
West.  Her  people  are  a  thinking  people,  independent  and  self- 
reliant.  They  are  now  and  have  been  from  the  first  the  most  con- 
servative body  of  people  in  the  Union.  They  adhere  to  the  simple 
principles  proclaimed  by  our  fathers  with  more  unanimity  and 
greater  tenacity  than  the  people  of  any  other  State.  They  are 
sane  and  safe,  and  they  are  as  progressive  as  the  most  theoretical 
could  desire.  They  have  less  demagogy  in  public  life  than 
can  be  found  in  any  other  country  of  equal  size  in  the  world. 
And  as  soldiers  they  have  never  been  surpassed  on  earth. 

It  was  these  very  qualities  of  her  people  that  made  the  Civil 


CONDITIONS  IN  MISSOURI  207 

War  a  carnival  of  blood  in  Missouri.  Every  man  stood  upon 
his  own  convictions,  and  he  stood  immovable.  He  laid  his  life 
and  all  his  possessions  upon  the  altar  of  his  devotion.  Such  a 
man  may  be  ruined,  despoiled,  slain,  but  he  will  not  be  false 
to  his  sense  of  right  and  justice. 

The  people  of  Missouri  were  for  the  Union  by  an  overwhelm- 
ing majority  every  day  of  the  Civil  War,  and  they  demon- 
strated that  fact  by  enlisting  in  the  Federal  army.  Including 
militia,  nearly  one  hundred  and  fifty  thousand  soldiers  were 
furnished  the  Union  by  Missouri.  And,  all  told,  the  Confed- 
eracy did  not  get  fifty  thousand.  The  man  with  the  farm  of 
medium  or  small  size,  the  merchant,  the  business  man,  and  the 
dwellers  in  cities  were  generally  for  the  Union.  The  man  with 
a  plantation  and  slaves  was  for  the  Confederacy.  These  were 
the  main  divisions,  and  they  carried  their  different  influences  to 
the  uttermost  bounds  of  society.  There  were  many  exceptions 
in  both  divisions. 

The  secessionists  were  influential  in  all  the  walks  of  life  in 
Missouri.  Back  of  them  were  pride  of  ancestry  and  achieve- 
ment and  traditions  which  exerted  vast  influence  on  the  life  of 
the  people.  They  were  aggressive  and  bold.  For  the  Confed- 
eracy they  became  intolerant  and  dictatorial.  Their  devotion 
to  the  traditions  of  the  South  was  fanatical,  and  as  slavery  had 
been  kept  at  the  forefront  of  Southern  institutions  the  secession- 
ists of  Missouri  made  it  their  shibboleth,  their  political  god,  their 
rallying-cry  from  the  passing  of  the  Kansas-Nebraska  bill  to  the 
close  of  the  Rebellion.  The  contention  of  Major  Edwards  and 
other  partisan  writers  that  the  actions  of  Union  soldiers  in  Mis- 
souri, whether  from  Kansas  or  elsewhere,  were  responsible  for 
the  bloody  nature  of  the  war  there  is  wholly  and  completely 
refuted  by  the  record.1  Quantrill  and  his  men,  and  Bill  Ander- 

i  See  all  through  the  Rebellion  Becords.  No  better  evidence  can  be 
cited.  See  also  the  work  of  Colonel  William  Monks  of  West  Plains,  recent- 
ly published  —  A  History  of  Southern  Missouri  and  Northern  Arkansas. 
See  even  the  histories  of  Missouri  counties  written  and  published  by  them- 
selves. They  are  filled  with  outrages  of  Missourians  upon  Missourians  in- 
spired by  political  conditions  alone.  There  were  undoubtedly  many  in- 
stances of  brutal  conduct  on  the  part  of  Federal  soldiers  in  Missouri,  and 
some  of  the  worst  were  by  Kansas  soldiers.  But  they  were  not  frequent 


208          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

son,  Todd,  Gordon,  Hildebrand,  Porter,  and  many  others  per- 
petrated deeds  in  Missouri  upon  Missourians  as  brutal  as  any 
others  did  and  as  inhuman  as  could  have  been  conceived  by  the 
savage  Indians  of  the  Plains  in  their  wildest  and  bloodiest  days. 
And  their  only  justification  for  such  a  course  was  that  their 
brother  Missourians  stood  for  the  Union.  Major  Edwards  him- 
self knew  this  to  be  true,  and  he  all  but  admitted  it: 

Chaos  had  now  pretty  well  come  again.  In  the  wake  of  a 
civil  war  which  permitted  always  the  impossible  to  the  strongest, 
beggars  got  upon  horseback  and  began  driving  every  decent 
thing  before  them  to  the  devil.  In  the  universal  upheaval 
lean  people  saw  how  they  might  become  fat,  and  paupers  how 
they  might  become  kings.  To  the  surface  of  the  cauldron  — 
because  of  the  tremendous  heat  beneath  it  —  there  came  things 
mean,  cowardly,  parasitical,  crouching,  contemptible,  bad.  Beasts 
of  prey  became  numerous,  and  birds  of  ill-omen  flew  hither  and 
thither.  The  law  —  it  was  the  sword;  the  process  —  it  was  the 
bayonet ;  the  constitution  —  it  was  hung  upon  the  gibbet ;  the 
right  —  the 

"Good  old  rule  —  the  simple  plan, 
That  they  should  take  who  have  the  power, 
And  they  should  keep  who  can." 

Much  has  been  said  of  the  course  of  the  Federal  troops 
enlisted  in  Kansas  and  their  actions  in  Missouri.  Also,  of  the 
brigandage  practiced  there  by  irregular  troops  from  Kansas,  and 
even  persons  not  in  any  way  connected  with  the  Federal  mili- 
tary forces.  The  burning  of  Osceola  by  General  James  H.  Lane 
was  much  complained  of,  and  the  destruction  of  private  prop- 
erty in  that  town  by  him  must  be  condemned.  But  the  action 
of  Lane  was  not  of  the  vicious  predatory  nature  practiced  later 
by  guerrillas  in  Kansas.  Non-combatants  were  not  killed.  Pub- 
lic records  were  preserved.  The  Federal  troops  went  there 
because  ordered  by  the  Federal  government  to  do  so,  and  this 
order  was  given  for  the  reason  that  Osceola  was  the  supply-base 
for  General  Sterling  Price  for  operations  in  Missouri.  To  cap- 
ture the  town  and  destroy  the  military  stores  belonging  to  the 
Confederate  government  there  was  legitimate  procedure  under 

or  widespread,  and  for  barbarity  and  savagery  did  not  approach  the  ac- 
tions of  the  Missourians  towards  one  another. 


CONDITIONS  IN  MISSOURI  209 

the  rules  governing  the  awful  condition  of  society  called  Civil 
War.3 

As  to  the  course  of  Colonel  Jennison  in  Missouri  very  little 
in  justification  can  be  said.  Jennison  was  a  bad  man,  certainly. 
He  committed  outrages  and  crimes  in  Missouri.  There  is  no 
doubt  that  the  people  of  Missouri  had  just  cause  of  complaint 
against  him.  And  this  fact  makes  it  impossible  that  Missourians 
could  be  justified  for  doing  in  Kansas  what  Jennison  did  in 
Missouri.  But  the  service  of  Jennison  was  cut  short  by  the  Fed- 
eral government.  It  must  be  remembered  that  he  was  appointed 
and  commissioned  by  Governor  Robinson  of  Kansas,  and  that 
after  a  campaign  of  about  ninety  days  in  Missouri  he  was 
ordered  out  by  the  Federal  government  and  resigned.  And  it 
should  not  be  forgotten  that  General  Lane  at  that  time  usually 
decided  what  the  Federal  government  did  in  military  matters 
in  Kansas.  Jennison  did  not  have  the  approval  of  the  govern- 
ment in  his  course  in  Missouri,  nor  did  Quantrill  have  the 
approval  of  the  Confederate  government  for  his  course  in  Kan- 
sas. The  course  of  Jennison  was  not  approved  by  any  great 


2  It  was  charged  that  General  Price  was  much  enraged  by  the 
destruction  of  his  stores  at  Osceola,  and  that  he  counseled  the  sacking 
of  Kansas  towns  and  murder  of  innocent  people  in  retaliation.  Quantrill 
asserted  this  at  Lawrence.  The  author  has  found  little  to  support  this 
charge.  General  Price  was  a  humane  man  and  an  honorable  soldier,  and 
it  is  not  probable  that  he  advised  any  such  course.  In  a  letter  written 
by  C.  M.  Chase  from  Humboldt,  Kansas,  to  his  paper,  the  True  Republican 
and  Sentinel,  Sycamore,  Illinois,  August  19,  1863,  it  is  said  that 

In  1861  the  rebel  Colonels  Williams  and  Matthews  visited  the  town 
with  a  small  force,  and  sacked  nearly  every  house  and  store.  The  next 
year  immediately  after  Lane  burned  Osceola,  General  Price  sent  Colonel 
Talbot  to  retaliate  on  Humboldt,  which  he  did  effectually,  leaving  but 
one  or  two  houses  standing  around  the  square.  The  citizens  have  had 
their  share  of  the  evils  of  rebellion.  Col.  Talbot  not  only  sacked  and 
burned,  but  killed  some  four  or  five  of  the  citizens  who  attempted  to  de- 
fend their  property. 

The  author  can  not  believe  that  this  was  done  at  the  instance  of  a 
soldier  with  the  delicate  sense  of  honor  known  to  have  actuated  General 
Price.  And  there  were  many  Kansas  towns  much  nearer  the  border  and 
more  easily  reached  than  Humboldt,  and  these  would  probably  have  been 
chosen  for  destruction  had  General  Price  wished  to  assume  the  role  of 
freebooter. 
14 


210          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

number  of  Kansas  citizens,  nor  was  that  of  Quantrill  in  Kansas 
approved  by  the  people  of  Missouri. 

That  the  irregular  forces  —  guerrillas  —  resulted  from  con- 
ditions existing  in  Missouri  must  be  admitted.  That  the  actions 
of  Federal  soldiers  aggravated  these  conditions  and  became  in 
some  measure  responsible  for  the  guerrillas  and  their  actions 
must  also  be  admitted.  But  that  this  cause  could  be  held  to 
justify  what  the  irregular  forces  did  in  Missouri  can  not  be 
maintained.  In  crushing  the  rebellion  against  the  government 
in  Missouri  the  guerrillas  would  have  been  just  what  they  were 
had  all  the  Federal  troops  sent  there  been  from  New  York  or 
Ohio.  In  fact,  most  of  these  troops  were  native  Missourians. 
Guerrilla  warfare  always  originates  spontaneously  from  such 
conditions  as  existed  in  Missouri  in  Kansas  Territorial  times  and 
the  Civil  War.  It  would  have  existed  in  Missouri  in  those  times 
if  there  had  not  lived  a  single  soul  in  what  is  now  Kansas. 

As  showing  the  actions  of  the  Missourians  favoring  the  Con- 
federacy towards  their  neighbors  and  friends  when  the  war 
began,  the  case  of  Colonel  William  Monks,  of  West  Plains,  Mo., 
may  be  cited.  An  instance  from  that  part  of  Missouri  is  selected 
for  the  reason  that  it  is  adjoining  the  state  of  Arkansas  and  was 
wholly  out  of  the  range  and  influence  of  the  Kansas  Territorial 
troubles,  and  it  is  the  desire  that  no  injustice  be  done  Missouri 
or  a  single  citizen  of  that  state.  Colonel  Monks  was  born  in 
Alabama,  on  the  Tennessee  river.  His  father  moved  to  Northern 
Arkansas  in  1844  —  Fulton  county.  Monks  grew  up  in  that 
part  of  Arkansas  and  in  Southern  Missouri.  At  the  commence- 
ment of  the  Civil  War  he  lived  at  West  Plains.  He  was  intensely 
loyal  to  the  Union  and  so  remained  throughout.  General 
McBride  —  Confederate  —  was  at  that  time  judge  of  the  Eigh- 
teenth Judicial  Circuit  Court  of  Missouri,  which  included  West 
Plains.  He  was  mad  on  the  subject  of  "Southern  Rights."  He 
took  the  lead  against  the  Union  men  of  Southern  Missouri : 

As  the  organization  of  the  Confederates  proceeded  they 
grew  more  bitter  against  the  Union  men  and  declared,  by  meet- 
ing and  passing  resolutions,  that  every  Union  man  should  show 
his  colors  in  favor  of  the  South  or  be  hung  as  high  as  Haman.s 

3  A  History  of  Southern  Missouri  and  Northern  Arkansas,  p.  46.  This 
work  will  be  referred  to  hereafter  simply  as  the  Work  of  Colonel  Monks. 


CONDITIONS  IN  MISSOURI  211 

One  day  a  neighbor  came  to  Colonel  Monks  and  told  him  of 
an  order  issued  by  General  McBride  "requiring  all  Union  men 
to  come  in  and  take  the  oath,  and  unless  they  do  they  are  going 
to  be  hung  as  high  as  Haman."  McBride  soon  issued  another 
order,  directing  that  all  arms,  ammunition,  and  horses  be  seized, 
and  that  the  country  be  given  over  to  the  leading  rebels  who 
resided  in  it,  and  who  immediately  gave  notice  that  all  who 
refused  to  take  the  oath  would  be  either  arrested,  imprisoned, 
or  forced  into  the  Confederate  army  to  fight,  and  their  leading 
men  hung.  Then  they  began  to  capture  the  Union  men,  who 
had  to  flee  to  the  woods  and  hills : 

After  they  had  completely  disarmed  them  and  forced 
many  to  join  the  Confederate  service,  had  taken  most  of  their 
horses,  cattle  and  hogs  for  the  use  of  the  army,  the  leading  rebels 
in  the  county  claimed  that  they  had  organized  for  the  purpose 
of  ridding  the  country  of  all  Union  men  who  had  refused  to 
join  the  Confederate  forces ;  and  that  when  McBride  moved  west 
he  was  going  to  leave  the  whole  matter  in  their  hands,  and  they 
intended  to  string  up  the  Union  men  to  limbs  and  shoot  them, 
so  they  would  soon  be  rid  of  that  class  of  men  who  were  friends 
of  the  lop-eared  Dutch  and  were  nigger  lovers. 

Small  bunches  of  rebel  troops  came  in  from  Arkansas  and 
joined  the  bands  that  were  raiding  the  country,  and  the  Union 
men  were  hunted  like  wild  beasts.  Then  set  in  the  darkest  days 
that  ever  any  class  of  patriots  true  to  their  government,  had  to 
confront.4 

Prior  to  his  march  to  join  General  Sterling  Price,  McBride 
issued  another  order,  directing  that  "they  arrest  and  seize  every 
Union  man  possible"  and  saying  that  after  he  had  marched,  the 
committee  which  had  been  organized  ' '  would  at  once  exterminate 
every  Union  man  who  had  failed  to  take  the  oath  or  join  the 
Confederate  army."  Many  Union  men  joined  the  Confederate 
army  to  save  their  lives  and  their  families  from  destruction. 
But  the  great  majority  chose  to  take  their  chances  and  if  need 
be  suffer  death  rather  than  fight  against  their  convictions  for 
the  Confederacy.  Monks  was  one  of  these.  On  the  7th  of  July, 
1861,  he  was  arrested  under  the  order  promulgated  by  McBride. 
As  he  was  taken  to  McBride 's  camp  he  was  warned  as  follows: 

4  The  Work  of  Colonel  Monks,  p.  51. 


Listen!  Do  you  hear  the  drums  and  the  fife?  That  is 
General  McBride's  command  moving  west  to  kill  them  lop-eared 
Dutch  that  you  Union  men  have  brought  into  the  state  of  Mis- 
souri. Do  you  know  what  we  are  going  to  do  with  such  men  as 
you  are  ?  Those  of  you  that  we  don 't  hang,  the  first  fight  that 
we  get  into  with  the  lop-eared  Dutch,  we  will  make  breastworks 
out  of  to  keep  the  bullets  off  of  good  men.s 

As  Colonel  Monks  was  being  taken  past  an  Oregon  county 
company  its  captain  said,  "Why  have  you  brought  a  Union  man 
in  here  alive?  If  my  company  had  possession  of  him,  he  could 
not  live  ten  minutes."  When  his  guard  reached  their  own  com- 
pany with  him  the  captain  asked,  "Why  have  you  brought  him 
in  here  alive?"  Some  of  them  said  Monks  was  their  neighbor 
and  they  hated  to  kill  him.  The  captain  replied :  ' '  When  I  saw 
him  at  West  Plains  at  the  speaking  when  he  got  up  and  con- 
tended that  there  was  a  Union  and  the  government  ought  to  be 
preserved,  I  wanted  to  shoot  his  black  heart  out  of  him  and  I  feel 
the  same  way  yet."  In  discussing  what  disposition  should  be 
made  of  him  many  said  "Hang  him  outright."  Others  thought 
that  too  harsh  for  a  neighbor,  but  favored  putting  him  in  the 
Arkansas  penitentiary  until  the  war  was  over.  This  plan  was 
objected  to  as  "too  easy  for  a  man  who  was  in  favor  of  the  lop- 
eared  Dutch;  that  we  are  in  favor  of  taking  all  like  him  right 
into  the  army  and  making  them  fight  and  if  they  won't  fight 
the  first  engagement  we  get  into,  pile  them  up  and  make  breast- 
works out  of  them,  so  that  they  will  catch  the  bullets  off  of  good 
men." 

Later,  Monks  was  traded  off  for  a  beef-cow,  and  the  gang 
that  got  him  told  him  to  run,  expecting  to  shoot  him  for  trying  to 
escape.  He  refused  to  run.  Then  a  man  came  with  a  rope  and 
said,  "Monks,  you  have  half  a  minute  to  say  you  will  join  the 
army  and  fight,  or  go  to  hell,  just  which  you  please."  Monks 
appealed  to  the  captain  for  protection,  and  the  captain  replied: 
"I  have  been  shooting  and  wounding  some  of  these  black  Re- 
publicans who  are  friends  of  the  lop-eared  Dutch,  but  I  intend 
to  shoot  the  balance  of  them  dead."  The  appeal  to  the  captain 
secured  Monks  a  short  reprieve.  At  Yellville  he  was  put  with 
some  other  prisoners.  "As  usual,  the  abuse  that  had  been  con- 

s  The  Work  of  Colonel  Monks,  p.  58. 


CONDITIONS  IN  MISSOURI  213 

tinually  heaped  upon  the  prisoners  during  the  march  was  re- 
newed and  in  a  short  time  a  man  who  was  said  to  be  from  one 
of  the  counties  north  of  Rolla,  Mo.,  commenced  making  a  speech 
and  inciting  and  encouraging  the  soldiers  to  mob  the  prisoners 
at  once ;  that  he  had  disguised  himself  and  entered  the  camps  of 
the  lop-eared  Dutch  at  Rolla,  and  that  to  his  own  personal 
knowledge  they  had  men's  wives  and  daughters  inside  their 
camps,  committing  all  manner  of  offenses  possible,  and  that  they 
were  heathens;  didn't  resemble  American  people  at  all  and  that 
he  would  not  guard  nor  feed  any  man  who  was  a  friend  of  them ; 
that  they  ought  to  be  killed  outright. '  '6 

Colonel  Monks  escaped  from  McBride  at  Eureka  Springs, 
and  thus  escaped  death.  He  describes  the  pitiable  condition  of 
the  Union  men  in  Southern  Missouri  after  the  battle  of  Wilson 
Creek : 

The  rebels  being  encouraged  by  the  late  victory,  determined 
to  rid  the  country  of  all  Union  men  at  once.  About  that  time 
about  350  men,  mostly  from  Oregon  county,  commanded  by  two 
very  prominent  men,  made  a  scout  into  Ozark  county,  Mo.  On 
reaching  the  North  Fork  of  White  River  they  went  into  camp 
at  what  was  known  as  Jesse  James'  mill.  The  owner,  a  man  of 
about  55  or  60  years  of  age,  as  good  a  man  as  resided  in  Ozark 
county,  was  charged  with  grinding  corn  for  Union  men  and  their 
families;  at  the  time  he  and  a  man  by  the  name  of  Brown  were 
cutting  saw  logs  about  two  miles  from  home  in  the  pinery. 
They  went  out  and  arrested  them,  arrested  an  old  man  by  the 
name  of  Russell  and  several  others,  carried  them  to  a  man's 
house,  who  was  a  Union  man,  and  had  fled  to  prevent  arrest. 
They  took  Brown  and  James  about  300  yards  from  the  house, 
procured  a  rope,  hunted  a  long  limb  of  a  tree,  rolled  a  big  rock 
up  to  the  tree  where  the  first  rope  was  tied  to  the  limb,  placed 
the  noose  about  James'  neck,  stood  him  on  the  rock,  rolled  the 
rock  out  from  under  him  and  left  him  swinging,  rolled  the  rock 
to  the  next  rope,  stood  Brown  on  it,  placed  the  noose  around 
his  neck,  rolled  the  rock  out  and  left  Brown  swinging  in  the  air, 
went  to  the  third  rope,  placed  Russell  on  the  rock,  and  just  as 
they  aimed  to  adjust  the  noose,  word  came  that  the  home  guards 


6  Eead  also  Parson  Brownlow's  Boole.  It  describes  many  murders 
and  outrages  committed  on  Union  men  in  Eastern  Tennessee,  the  sole  cause 
of  these  outrages  having  been  inflicted  upon  the  Union  men  and  their 
families  because  they  clung  to  the  Union. 


214          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

and  Federals  were  right  upon  them  in  considerable  force.  They 
fled,  leaving  Russell  standing  upon  the  rock  and  both  Brown  and 
James  dangling  in  the  air. 

Every  Union  man  now  having  fled  in  fear  of  his  life,  the 
next  day  the  wives  of  Brown  and  James,  with  the  help  of  a  few 
other  women,  buried  them  as  best  they  could.  They  dug  graves 
underneath  the  swinging  bodies,  laid  bed  clothing  in  the  graves 
and  cut  them  loose.  The  bodies  fell  into  the  coffinless  graves 
and  the  earth  was  replaced.  So  the  author  is  satisfied  that  the 
bones  of  these  men  still  remain  in  the  lonely  earth  underneath 
where  they  met  their  untimely  death  with  no  charge  against 
them  except  that  they  had  been  feeding  Union  men,  with  no  one 
to  bury  them  but  their  wives  and  a  few  other  women  who  aided. 

Some  of  the  men  who  were  in  the  scout  and  present  when 
the  hanging  was  done  are  still  living  in  the  counties  of  Howell 
and  Oregon. 

A  short  time  after  this  hanging  there  was  a  man  by  the 
name  of  Rhodes,  who  resided  at  the  head  of  Bennett's  Bayou 
in  Howell  County.  He  was  about  eighty  years  of  age  and  had 
been  a  soldier  under  General  Jackson.  His  head  was  perfectly 
white  and  he  was  very  feeble.  "When  he  heard  of  the  hanging 
of  Brown  and  James  he  said  openly  that  there  was  no  civil  war 
in  that,  and  that  the  men  who  did  it  were  guilty  of  murder. 

Some  two  weeks  from  the  date  of  the  hanging  of  Brown 
and  James,  about  twenty-five  men,  hearing  of  what  he  had  said, 
organized  themselves  and  commanded  by  Dr.  Nunly  and  William 
Sapp,  proceeded  to  the  house  of  Rhodes,  where  he  and  his  aged 
wife  resided  alone,  calling  him  out  and  told  him  they  wanted  him 
to  go  with  them.  His  aged  wife  came  out,  and  being  acquainted 
with  a  part  of  the  men,  and  knowing  that  they  had  participated 
in  the  hanging  and  shooting  of  a  number  of  Union  men,  talked 
with  them  and  asked:  "You  are  not  going  to  hurt  my  old  man?" 
They  said :  ' '  We  just  want  him  to  go  a  piece  with  us  over  here. ' ' 
Ordering  the  old  man  to  come  along,  they  went  over  to  a  point 
about  a  quarter  of  a  mile  from  the  house  and  informed  him  of 
what  he  had  said.  There  they  shot  him,  cut  his  ears  off  and  his 
heart  out.  Dr.  Nunly  remarked  that  he  was  going  to  take  the 
heart  home  with  him,  pickle  it  and  keep  it  so  people  could  see 
how  a  black  Republican's  heart  looked. 

In  the  meantime,  Rhodes  not  having  returned  home,  and  not 
a  single  Union  man  left  in  the  country  that  Mrs.  Rhodes  could 
get  to  look  after  him,  and  having  heard  when  they  reached 
Joseph  Spears'  that  the  old  man  was  not  with  them,  although 
very  feeble,  she  still  continued  the  search;  on  the  second  day, 
about  fifty  yards  from  the  road  and  about  a  quarter  of  a  mile 
from  home,  she  heard  hogs  squealing  and  grunting  as  though 


CONDITIONS  IN  MISSOURI  215 

they  were  eating  something.  She  proceeded  to  the  place  and 
found  the  hogs  were  just  about  to  commence  eating  the  remains 
of  her  husband.  The  Union  men  having  fled,  she  notified  some  of 
the  neighbors,  and  the  women  came  in  and  helped  dress  the 
body  and  buried  him  the  best  they  could. 

There  never  was  a  man  arrested  by  the  Confederate  author- 
ities, or  a  single  word  of  condemnation  uttered,  but  as  far  as 
could  be  heard  there  was  general  approval.  It  was  said  that 
the  means  were  desperate',  but  that  was  the  only  way  to  get  rid 
of  the  men  and  strike  terror  to  them  so  they  could  neither  give 
aid  nor  countenance  to  the  lop-eared  Dutch. 

In  a  few  days  following  they  proceeded  to  arrest  Benjamin 
Alsup,  residing  in  Hutton  Valley,  who  was  a  strong  Union  man, 
took  him  to  Little  Rock,  placed  him  in  the  state  penitentiary, 
and  kept  him  there  until  after  Little  Rock  fell  into  the  hands 
of  the  Federals,  when  they  exchanged  him  with  other  prisoners. 
While  they  had  him  in  prison  they  worked  him  in  a  bark  mill 
by  the  side  of  an  old  mule,  with  a  strap  around  his  breast  and 
two  leather  hand  holes.  He  pulled  so  much  in  the  mill  that  his 
little  finger  was  calloused  and  he  almost  entirely  lost  the  use 
of  it. 

After  they  had  hung,  shot,  and  captured  and  driven  from  the 
country  all  of  the  Union  men,  they  called  a  public  meeting  for 
the  purpose  of  taking  into  consideration  what  should  be  done 
with  the  families  of  the  Union  men,  which  meeting  had  a  number 
of  preachers  in  it.  After  discussing  the  premises,  they  arrived 
at  the  conclusion  that  if  they  let  the  families  of  the  Union  men, 
who  had  escaped  and  gone  into  the  Federal  lines,  remain,  they 
would  return  and  bring  in  the  lop-eared  Dutch.  They  didn't 
believe  that  both  parties  could  ever  live  together,  and  as  they 
now  had  the  country  completely  rid  of  the  Union  men,  they 
would  force  their  families  to  leave.  They  at  once  appointed  men, 
among  whom  were  several  preachers,  to  go  to  each  one  of  the 
Union  families  and  notify  them  that  they  would  not  be  allowed 
to  remain;  because  if  they  let  them  stay,  their  men  would  be 
trying  to  come  back,  and  they  didn't  believe  both  parties  could 
live  together.  They  stated  at  the  same  time  that  they  were 
really  sorry  for  the  women  and  children,  but  nobody  was  to 
blame  but  their  husbands  and  sons,  who  had  cast  their  lot  with 
the  lop-eared  Dutch.  Also,  as  they  had  taken  up  arms  against 
the  Confederate  States,  all  the  property  they  had,  both  real  and 
personal,  was  subject  to  confiscation  and  belonged  to  the  Con- 
federate authorities;  but  they  would  allow  them  to  take  enough 
of  their  property  to  carry  them  inside  of  the  lines  of  the  lop- 
eared  Dutch,  where  they  supposed  their  men  were  and  where 
they  could  care  for  them. 


216          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

They  said  they  might  have  a  reasonable  time  to  make  prep- 
arations to  leave  the  coutnry,  and  if  they  didn't  leave,  they 
would  be  forced  to  do  so,  if  they  had  to  arrest  them  and  carry 
them  out. 

The  wildest  excitement  then  prevailed  among  the  women 
and  children.  They  had  no  men  to  transact  their  business  and 
make  preparations  to  leave.  Little  had  they  thought,  while  they 
were  chasing,  arresting,  hanging  and  shooting  their  men,  that 
they,  too,  would  become  victims  of  the  rebel  hatred  and  be  forced 
to  leave  house  and  home,  not  knowing  where  their  men  were  or 
whether  they  were  dead  or  alive.  All  they  knew  of  their  where- 
abouts was,  that  those  who  escaped  arrest  had  left  their  homes, 
aiming  to  reach  the  nearest  Federal  lines. 

Women  were  at  once  dispatched  to  reach  the  nearest  Fed- 
eral lines,  if  possible,  and  inform  them  of  the  Confederate  order, 
and  procure  help  to  take  them  out.  Their  homes  and  houses 
were  being  continually  raided  by  small  bands  of  Confederates 
roaming  over  the  country,  claiming  that  they  were  hunting 
Union  men,  taking  all  classes  of  property  that  they  might  see 
proper  to  take,  without  any  restraint  whatever. 

The  suffering  that  followed  the  women  and  children  is  in- 
describable. They  had  to  drive  their  own  teams,  take  care  of 
the  little  ones,  travel  through  the  storms,  exposed  to  it  all  with- 
out a  man  to  help  them,  nor  could  they  hear  a  single  word  of 
comfort  spoken  by  husband,  son  or  friend.  On  reaching  the 
Federal  lines,  all  vacant  houses  and  places  of  shelter  were  soon 
filled,  and  they  were  known  and  styled  as  refugees.  Many  of 
them  went  into  soldier  huts,  where  the  soldiers  had  wintered 
and  covered  the  tops  of  their  huts  with  earth.  They  had  to 
leave  home  with  a  small  amount  of  rations,  and  on  the  road  the 
rebels  would  stop  them  and  make  them  divide  up  the  little  they 
had  started  with,  and  reaching  the  Federal  lines  they  would  be 
almost  destitute  of  food  and  many  of  them  very  scantily  clothed. 

They  would  at  once  commence  inquiring  for  their  husbands 
and  sons.  Numbers  of  them  never  found  them,  as  they  had  been 
captured,  killed  and  imprisoned  while  attempting  to  reach  the 
Federal  lines.  0 !  The  untold  misery  that  then  confronted  them ! 
After  they  had  traveled  and  half  starved  and  suffered  from  cold 
and  exposure,  promising  themselves  that  when  they  reached  the 
Federal  lines  they  would  again  meet  their  loved  ones  who  could 
again  care  for  them,  they  were  doomed  to  disappointment,  in  a 
large  number  of  instances. 

Those  who  did  meet  their  husbands  and  sons  were  also  dis- 
appointed; they  had  either  joined  the  service  or  been  employed 
by  the  government  as  guides  and  scouts,  and  the  small  amount 
of  pay  they  received  from  the  government,  wouldn't  provide 


CONDITIONS  IN  MISSOURI  217 

food  and  raiment  for  their  families.  They  were  compelled  to 
still  be  absent  from  their  families,  although  they  were  suffering 
greatly  for  all  of  the  necessaries  of  life  and  for  clothing  and 
shelter.  The  women's  task  of  caring  for  and  looking  after  the 
family  and  the  little  ones  was  just  as  great  after  they  had 

reached  the  Federal  lines  as  before Winter  came  on 

and  they  underwent  untold  sufferings;  disease  set  in  from  ex- 
posure, besides  the  contagious  diseases  of  small  pox  and  measles, 
and  hundreds  of  them  died  for  want  of  proper  attention,  while 
their  men  were  in  the  lines  of  the  service  of  the  government.7 

7  Colonel  Monks  relates  one  incident  in  which  it  appears  that  a  squad 
of  the  "lop-eared"  Dutch  took  a  moderate  revenge  upon  one  of  these  fire- 
eaters  of  Southern  Missouri,  and  as  it  is  perhaps  the  only  instance  of  the 
kind  which  can  be  found,  it  is  set  out  here. 

The  author  remembers  one  incident  that  occurred  during  the  stay 
at  West  Plains.  A  man  named  Lusk,  who  was  constable  of  Howell  town- 
ship, and  resided  in  West  Plains,  was  a  strong  Union  man  at  the  beginning 
of  the  war;  when  the  general  order  was  made  that  every  man  who  had 
been  a  Union  man  had  to  join  the  Confederate  service  and  show  his  colors 
or  be  hung,  Lusk  enlisted  in  the  Confederate  army  and  went  out  with 
McBride's  command. 

Three  or  four  days  after  the  capture  of  the  author  by  the  rebels, 
Lusk  came  up  to  him  in  a  braggadocio  manner  and  says,  "You  ought  to 
have  your  black  heart  shot  out  of  you."  Lusk  had  taken  the  oath  and 
had  been  released  before  the  author  reached  West  Plains.  The  author 
met  him  in  West  Plains  and  remarked  to  him:  "Hallo,  Lusk!  How  are 
you  getting  along?  And  what  are  you  doing  here?"  He  replied  that  he 
had  taken  the  oath;  that  he  was  tired  of  fighting.  The  author  asked  him 
if  he  felt  like  he  did  when  he  wanted  to  shoot  his  black  heart  out.  Lusk 
replied:  "Captain,  I  am  sorry  for  what  I  did,  and  Captain  Emmons  so 
maltreated  me  the  other  day  that  I  could  scarcely  sit  in  my  saddle."  The 
author  remarked  to  him :  "I  will  just  give  your  face  three  good  slaps  with 
my  hand."  After  giving  him  three  raps,  the  author  let  him  pass. 

Soon  meeting  Captain  Emmons,  who  belonged  to  the  6th  Missouri 
Cavalry,  had  asked  him  what  the  trouble  was  between  him  and  Lusk.  He 
said  that  while  he  was  prisoner  Lusk  came  to  him  with  his  big  knife  belted 
around  him,  and  said  that  he  was  just  equal  to  ten  lop-eared  Dutch  and 
he  had  that  knife  for  the  purpose  of  taking  ten  Dutch  scalps  before  he 
returned  home,  and  otherwise  abused  him  for  being  a  Union  man  and  a 
friend  of  the  Dutch. 

On  the  arrival  of  the  troops  in  West  Plains  he  inquired  of  the  citizens 
if  Lusk  had  returned  home.  They  informed  him  that  he  had  and  was 
residing  on  Spring  Creek,  about  six  miles  from  town.  About  half  of 
Emmona'  company  were  Germans.  He  went  immediately  to  his  company, 
ordered  the  Orderly  Sergeant  to  make  detail  of  ten  men  and  he  wanted 
them  all  to  be  Germans.  He  ordered  them  to  be  mounted  and  ready  for  a 
scout  at  once.  Taking  charge  of  them  in  person  he  proceeded  to  the  house 
of  Lusk,  about  six  miles  west  of  West  Plains  at  the  head  of  Spring  Creek, 
rode  up  to  the  house  and  halloed.  Lusk  immediately  came  out  into  the 
yard  and  recognized  Dr.  Emmons  and  said  "O!  Doctor!  Is  that  you?  I 
am  proud  to  see  you."  The  Doctor  said  to  him,  "I  am  proud  to  see  you, 
too."  The  Doctor  at  once  informed  him  of  what  he  had  said  to  him 


218          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

In  further  proof  that  it  is  preposterous  to  charge  all  the  rob- 
bery and  outrage  committed  in  Missouri  on  those  not  in  sympathy 
with  the  Southern  Confederacy,  I  quote  from  the  letter  of 
Thomas  C.  Reynolds,  Confederate  Governor  of  Missouri,  printed 
under  his  signature  in  the  Marshall  (Texas)  Republican,  and 
published  at  pp.  467-474,  Shelby  and  His  Men,  by  Major  John 
N.  Edwards.  The  robberies  and  outrages  were  committed,  Gov- 

when  he  was  a  prisoner  in  regard  to  being  equal  to  ten  lop-eared  Dutch- 
men and  how  he  had  his  knife  prepared  to  take  that  number  of  scalps 
before  he  came  back  home,  and  wanted  to  know  if  he  got  the  scalps  before 
he  came  back  home.  Lusk  replied  that  if  he  killed  a  single  Dutchman  he 
didn't  know  it  and  that  he  got  all  the  fighting  that  he  wanted,  didn't  want 
to  fight  any  more. 

The  Doctor  wanted  to  know  if  he  ever  saw  any  lop-eared  Dutch  and 
Lusk  replied  that  he  "didn't  know  that  he  had."  The  Doctor  replied, 
"I  have  selected  ten  of  the  smallest  sized  of  the  full  stock  and  I  want  you 
to  step  over  the  fence  and  view  them."  He  then  ordered  the  scouts  to 
dismount  and  form  in  line.  Lusk  told  the  Doctor  he  didn't  want  any- 
thing to  do  with  them  whatever.  After  they  had  formed  a  line  the 
Doctor  made  him  step  in  front  and  view  them;  asked  him  what  he  thought 
of  them.  He  said  "They  are  good-looking  men."  The  Doctor  said  to 
him,  "If  you  didn't  get  the  chance  when  you  were  out  in  the  service  to 
fight  ten  of  them,  and  you  say  you  didn't  get  any  scalps,  I  have  brought 
these  ten  down  and  intend  that  you  shall  fight  them."  Lusk  pleaded  with 
the  Doctor  that  he  didn't  want  to  fight  them  and  for  God's  sake  not  to 
let  them  hurt  him.  Emmons  said  to  him  "Why  Lusk!  you  said  you  were 
equal  to  ten  of  them  and  intended  to  bring  back  ten  of  their  scalps  and 
there  will  be  nothing  unfair  about  this  fight.  I  intend  to  give  you  a  fair 
show."  He  ordered  Lusk  to  get  his  horse  and  get  onto  it  and  get  ready 
to  march. 

There  were  some  four-foot  clapboards  stacked  up  near  Lusk's  house, 
and  Emmons  ordered  six  of  the  Germans  to  get  a  board  apiece.  They 
were  all  soon  mounted  and  moving  towards  West  Plains,  soon  coming  to  a 
"horsen"  log.  Emmons  ordered  them  to  dismount  and  form  a  line,  plac- 
ing the  men  about  ten  paces  from  Lusk,  then  said  to  Lusk,  "Now,  prepare 
yourself,  and  if  you  can  whip  these  ten  lop-eared  Dutch  I  will  let  you 
go  back  home  and  give  you  a  chromo. "  Lusk  pleaded  pitifully  to  not  let 
the  Dutch  abuse  him.  Emmons  ordered  the  six  who  had  the  clapboards  to 
move  one  pace  in  the  rear,  leaving  four  of  the  number  to  attack  Lusk; 
he  then  ordered  the  four  men  to  seize  Lusk,  take  him  to  the  "horsen" 
log  and  take  down  his  clothes.  Two  of  them  were  to  take  him  by  the 
hands  and  two  by  the  legs  and  buck  him  tight  against  the  log;  if  they 
succeeded,  the  six  would  proceed,  one  at  a  time,  and  strike  him  three  licks 
across  that  part  of  the  body  that  he  generally  used  for  sitting  on. 

He  then  turned  to  Lusk,  saying,  "Prepare  to  meet  them;  if  you  are 
a  better  man  than  they  are,  down  them  and  pile  them  up."  At  the  com- 
mand of  Capt.  Emmons,  the  four  men  advanced  on  Lusk,  who  did  not  at- 
tempt to  move,  seized  him  by  the  arms,  led  him  to  the  log,  bucked  him 
over  it,  two  holding  him  by  the  arms  and  two  by  the  legs,  ordered  the  six 
men  to  advance,  one  at  a  time,  strike  three  licks  with  the  flat  side  of  the 
board,  march  on  a  few  paces  and  give  room  for  the  next. 

After  the  performance  had  been  completely  carried  out  as  commanded, 


CONDITIONS  IN  MISSOURI  219 

ernor  Reynolds  charges,  by  the  soldiers  under  General  Price,  in 
his  invasion  of  Missouri  in  1864.  Major  Edwards  admits  the 
truth  of  these  charges  in  publishing  them,  and  he  expressly  ad- 
mits them,  in  addition: 

It  would  take  a  volume  to  describe  the  acts  of  outrage; 
neither  station,  age  nor  sex  was  any  protection;  Southern  men 
and  women  were  as  little  spared  as  Unionists;  the  elegant  man- 
sion of  General  Robert  E.  Lee's  accomplished  niece  and  the  cabin 
of  the  negro  were  alike  ransacked ;  John  Deane,  the  first  civilian 
ever  made  a  State  prisoner  by  Mr.  Lincoln's  Government,  had 
his  watch  and  money  robbed  from  his  person,  in  the  open  street 
of  Potosi,  in  broad  day,  as  unceremoniously  as  the  German  mer- 
chant at  Fredrickstown  was  forced,  a  pistol  at  his  ear,  to  sur- 
render his  concealed  greenbacks.  As  the  citizens  of  Arkansas 
and  Northern  Texas  have  seen  in  the  goods  unblushingly  of- 
fered them  for  sale,  the  clothes  of  the  poor  man 's  infant  were  as 
attractive  spoil  as  the  merchant's  silk  and  calico  or  the  curtain 
taken  from  the  rich  man's  parlor;  ribbons  and  trumpery  gee- 
gaws  were  stolen  from  milliners,  and  jeweled  rings  forced  from 
the  fingers  of  delicate  maidens  whose  brothers  were  fighting  in 
Georgia  in  Cockrell's  Confederate  Missouri  Brigade. 


the  Captain  declared  that  he  could  have  heard  Lusk  halloing  a  mile  dis- 
tant every  time  the  clapboard  hit  him. 

After  he  had  received  the  boarding,  Emmons  said  that  Lnsk  was 
blistered  where  the  boards  hit  him,  and  that  he  never  saw  ten  Germans 
enjoy  themselves  as  much  in  his  life.  He  then  asked  Lusk,  in  their 
presence,  how  he  felt  now  in  regard  to  fighting  lop-eared  Dutch.  Lusk 
declared  that  he  had  nothing  against  the  Dutch  and  that  he  never  would 
want  to  fight  another  one  as  long  as  he  lived,  and  he  hoped  that  Dr. 
Emmons  would  not  let  them  do  him  any  more  harm.  He  dressed  himself, 
they  were  all  mounted,  formed  a  line,  and  Lusk  was  brought  into  West 
Plains  and  took  the  oath,  under  the  promise  that  he  would  never  fight 
another  lop-eared  Dutchman. 

So,  the  excuses  made  for  Quantrill  and  others  who  led  guerrillas 
and  bands  of  outlaws  and  murderers  fall  to  the  ground  upon  investigation. 
The  actions  of  these  bands  were  not  inspired  by  the  treatment  Missouri 
received  from  Union  soldiers.  There  was  no  reason  whatever  why  the 
Confederacy  should  permit  the  existence  of  such  bands.  The  story  told  by 
Colonel  Monks  is  the  story  of  all  Missouri,  the  story  of  Eastern  Kentucky, 
Eastern  Tennessee,  and  all  the  border.  It  may  be  safely  said  that  a  great 
majority  of  the  outrages  committed  in  the  South  by  Union  men  resulted 
from  the  brutal  treatment  they,  their  wives,  and  children  had  been  com- 
pelled to  suffer  at  the  hands  of  brigands  and  the  inhuman  banditti  with 
which  they  were  surrounded,  and  this  bad  element  was  but  a  small  portion 
of  the  population. 


CHAPTEE  XVI 

QUANTRILL  BECOMES  NOTORIOUS  —  AUBRY  AND   OTHER 
SKIRMISHES 

UP  TO  the  beginning  of  the  year  1862  the  guerrillas  acted 
as  a  mob.  They  had  no  organization  and  were  but 
bunches  of  men  skulking  through  the  brush  and  over 
the  rough  hills  in  defiance  of  authority  either  civil  or  military. 
They  were  taking  revenge  personally  for  such  wrongs  as  they 
pretended  to  believe  themselves  or  the  country  subjected  to.  A 
man  might  appear  or  not  to  go  on  any  guerrilla  service.  There 
was  no  responsibility,  no  one  to  exercise  any  power,  no  one  to 
enforce  such  rude  discipline  and  primitive  conventionalities  as 
even  guerrillas  must  recognize.  Such  authority  as  they  might 
voluntarily  bow  to  was  lying  in  the  bush  or  in  the  highway  un- 
used. Quantrill  seized  it,  having  first  recognized  it  by  reason 
of  his  long  career  as  a  Jayhawker  and  border-ruffian,  his  experi- 
ences in  Kansas  giving  him  great  advantage  over  his  new-found 
associates  in  Missouri.  In  some  loose  way  he  in  a  manner  suc- 
ceeded Upton  Hays,  who  had  acted  upon  some  sort  of  roving 
commission  as  chief  of  "Partisan  Hangers"  between  the  Osage 
and  Missouri  rivers  in  Western  Missouri.  The  succession  was 
accomplished  by  the  departure  of  Hays  and  the  voluntary  occu- 
pation of  the  field  by  Quantrill.  No  "orders"  have  been  found 
that  in  any  way  relate  to  the  matter;  perhaps  there  were  none. 
The  material  for  the  guerrilla  or  bushwhacker  force  was  be- 
ing created  day  by  day  by  the  organization  of  the  armies  of  the 
Union  and  of  the  Confederacy.  Some  were  forced  to  an  inde- 
pendent course  by  circumstances  they  could  not  control.  To 
secure  protection  some  who  favored  the  Confederacy  joined  the 
Union  army.  Sometimes  these  found  life  and  service  in  the 
Union  army  impossible  to  them,  and  their  hatred  of  the  Union 
was  so  intensified  that  they  deserted.  They  were  afraid  to  enlist 
in  the  Confederate  army,  for  if  captured  and  recognized  they 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  NOTORIOUS  221 

would  be  shot  for  deserters  and  traitors.  They  invariably  became 
guerrillas.  A  goodly  number  of  the  men  who  followed  Quantrill 
and  Anderson  were  such  deserters.  Many  citizens  of  Missouri 
could  not  make  up  their  mind  to  join  the  Confederate  army, 
though  favoring  the  cause.  These  remained  at  home  in  sullen 
rebellion  against  the  Union,  and  were  sympathizers  with  the 
Confederacy.  They  harbored  and  encouraged  the  guerrillas,  and 
became  spies  for  them  and  furnished  intelligence  of  what  was 
transpiring  at  Federal  posts  which  they  visited.  Many  of  this 
class  loudly  proclaimed  that  they  were  Union  men  better  to  hide 
their  real  position  and  secure  protection.  The  outrages  com- 
mitted by  occasional  bands  of  lawless  Union  troops  so  enraged 
those  suffering  therefrom  that  they  joined  the  guerrillas  in  hope 
of  being  able  to  wreak  vengeance  upon  any  and  all  Union  par- 
tisans and  sympathizers  —  to  do  to  their  neighbors  of  a  different 
political  belief  those  very  things  they  complained  had  been  done 
to  themselves.  The  irresponsible  nature  of  the  service  of  the 
guerrillas  attracted  the  worst  elements  of  society  and  afforded 
them  opportunities  for  robbery  and  a  freedom  from  restraint  in 
the  indulgence  of  their  worst  passions.  All  this  nondescript 
material  existed,  awaiting  only  the  hand  of  some  master  of 
villainy  to  give  it  shape  and  fashion  it  into  form  and  thus  create 
a  force  vicious,  brutal,  without  responsibility  to  any  power,  bent 
on  revenge  —  to  despoil,  ravage,  pillage,  lay  waste,  and  rejoice 
in  the  destruction  of  human  life. 

By  Christmas,  1861,  Quantrill  had  gathered  about  him  some 
seven  men.  They  were  William  Hallar,  George  Todd,  Joseph 
Gilchrist,  Perry  Hoy,  John  Little,  James  Little,  and  Joe 
Vaughan.  About  Christmas  day  William  H.  Gregg,  James  A. 
Hendricks,  and  John  W.  Koger  joined  Quantrill.  They  rode 
together  in  search  of  him,  finding  him  and  his  seven  men  at  the 
farm  of  Mrs.  Samuel  Crump,  on  the  public  road  leading  from 
Independence  to  Blue  Springs.  The  band  was  not  in  camp 
there,  but  the  men  were  found  sitting  on  their  horses  in  the 
road  in  front  of  the  farm-house.  This  may  be  said  to  have  been 
the  beginning  of  Quantrill's  band  as  an  entity  —  as  a  separate 
and  distinct  organization  with  a  recognized  leader. 

At  the  Crump  farm  Quantrill  disbanded  his  company  for  a 


222          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

month.  Each  man  was  to  use  the  time  in  preparation  for  active 
work  as  soon  as  the  weather  would  permit.  No  opportunity  to 
secure  other  men  was  to  be  overlooked.  At  this  time  Jennison 
was  stationed  at  Blue  Springs.1 

The  first  skirmish  mentioned  by  Gregg  was  on  the  27th  of 
January,  1862,  and  was  between  seventeen  of  Jennison 's  men 
and  three  of  Quantrill  's  men,  at  the  house  of  Noah  McAlexander, 
in  Sni-a-Bar  township,  Jackson  county.  Gregg,  Hallar,  and  one 
other  were  the  Quantrill  men.  Crocket  Ralston,  John  Frisby, 
and  John  Barnhill,  three  unarmed  citizens,  were  also  in  the 
house.  The  armed  men  determined  to  fight,  and  the  citizens 
were  to  go  out  first  and  remain  between  the  Union  men  and  the 
Quantrill  men.  Ralston  and  Frisby  struck  out  for  themselves 
as  soon  as  they  cleared  the  door,  and  both  were  captured  and 
shot.  Barnhill  followed  Gregg's  party.  One  of  the  Quantrill 
men  was  shot,  but  Gregg,  Hallar,  and  Barnhill  escaped.  None 
of  Jennison 's  men  were  injured,  so  far  as  is  known. 

The  first  mention  of  Quantrill  in  the  official  records  falls  on 
February  3,  1862.2  This  mention  is  brief  and  it  is  as  follows : 

General :     I  have  just  returned  from  an  expedition  which  I 

1  Manuscript  of  William  H.  Gregg,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 
This  manuscript  was  written  by  Gregg,  who  was  an  officer  under  Quantrill 
until  the  winter  of  1863-64.     Gregg  was  quite  young  when  he  joined  Quan- 
trill.    He  was  driven  out  of  the  band  by  the  cut-throats  at  or  near  Sher- 
man, Texas,  early  in  1864,  when  he  joined  Shelby  and  was  made  a  captain 
in  Shanks 's  Brigade.     Or,  rather,  the  band  became  so  reckless  of  life  that 
the    men    began    to    kill    one    another,    and    Gregg    left    in    disgust.     The 
manuscript  will  be  referred  to  hereafter  as  the  Gregg  Manuscript.    It  is 
faithfully  written  and  very  accurate  to   have  been  written  from  memory 
alone.     Some  incidents  are  set  down  out  of  their  order,  but  the  accounts 
are  modest  and  truthful,  and  they  are  entirely   devoid  of  that  spirit   of 
boast  and  brag  found  so  prominent  in  the  works  of  Edwards.     Captain 
Gregg  has  been    (1908)    deputy  sheriff   of   Jackson  county,   Missouri,   for 
many  years   under  Eepublican   officials,   and  he   is   a   good   officer   and   a 
worthy  citizen.     When  the  war  was  over  it  was  over  forever  with  Captain 
Gregg,  and  he  immediately  returned  to  his  farm  and  took  up  the  pursuits 
of  peace,  which  he  ever  after  cherished  and  followed. 

2  Rebellion  Eecords,  Series  I,  Vol.  VIII,  p.  57.   Keport  of  Captain  Wil- 
liam S.  Oliver,  Seventh  Missouri  Infantry,  to  Brig.-Gen.  Pope,  dated  In- 
dependence, Mo.,  February  3,  1862. 


223 

was  compelled  to  undertake  in  search  of  the  notorious  Quantrill 
and  his  gang  of  robbers  in  the  vicinity  of  Blue  Springs.  With- 
out mounted  men  at  my  disposal,  despite  numerous  applications 
to  various  points,  I  have  seen  this  infamous  scoundrel  rob  mails, 
steal  the  coaches  and  horses,  and  commit  other  similar  outrages 
upon  society  even  within  sight  of  this  city.  Mounted  on  the 
best  horses  of  the  country,  he  has  defied  pursuit,  making  his 

camp  in  the  bottoms  of  the and  Blue,  and  roving  over 

a  circuit  of  30  miles.  I  mounted  a  company  of  my  command  and 
went  to  Blue  Springs.  The  first  night  there  myself,  with  5  men, 
were  ambushed  by  him  and  fired  upon.  We  killed  2  of  his  men 
(of  which  he  had  18  or  20)  and  wounded  a  third.  The  next  day 
we  killed  four  more  of  the  worst  of  the  gang,  and  before  we  left 

succeeded  in  dispersing  them 

Quantrill  will  not  leave  this  section  unless  he  is  chastised 
and  driven  from  it.  I  hear  of  him  tonight  15  miles  from  here, 
with  new  recruits,  committing  outrages  on  Union  men,  a  large 
body  of  whom  have  come  in  tonight,  driven  out  by  him.  Fam- 
ilies of  Union  men  are  coming  into  the  city  tonight  asking  of  me 
escorts  to  bring  in  their  goods  and  chattels,  which  I  duly 
furnished.  I  had  1  man  killed  and  2  wounded,  during  the  ex- 
pedition. 

February  22,  1862,  Quantrill,  with  some  fifteen  men,  rode 
to  Independence,  supposing  no  Union  troops  were  there.  Double- 
day 's  Ohio  Cavalry  had  just  passed  through  the  town,  and  when 
Quantrill  arrived  the  stragglers  galloped  out  and  informed  the 
regiment,  which  immediately  returned,  entering  the  public 
square  at  the  southwest  corner.  Quantrill  and  his  men  were  at 
the  northeast  corner  and  saw  the  Ohioans  come  in  on  the  dead 
run  in  platoons.  The  day  was  dark  and  foggy,  and  it  was  im- 
possible to  distinguish  uniforms  at  a  distance  of  fifty  yards. 
The  Union  men  were  armed  with  holster  pistols  and  sabres  — 
Quantrill 's  with  navy  revolvers,  shot-guns  and  Sharps 's  rifles. 
Quantrill 's  forces  fired  at  point  blank  range  and  retreated  on  the 
Spring  Branch  road,  closely  pursued  by  the  Ohioans,  who  shot 
out  their  pistols  and  drew  their  sabres.  Near  the  public  spring 
Gabriel  George  and  Hop  Wood,  guerrillas,  were  killed.  A  Union 
soldier  rode  beside  Gregg,  in  the  fog  mistaking  him  for  a  com- 
rade. Gregg  snapped  his  pistol  three  times  within  a  few  inches 
of  the  Ohioan's  ear,  but  the  weapon  missed  fire.  The  trooper 
seeing  his  mistake,  drew  his  sabre  and  slashed  at  Gregg,  who 


224          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

received  several  strokes  on  his  arms.  Quantrill  and  his  men 
ran  away  from  their  pursuers  and  were  soon  lost  in  the  mists, 
with  several  wounded.  The  Ohioans  lost  none.  In  this  skir- 
mish Quantrill  was  wounded,  and  his  horse  killed,  about  half  a 
mile  from  Independence.  He  climbed  up  a  steep  bank  or  bluff, 
between  the  rocks,  and  was  not  pursued.  He  attended  the 
funeral  of  George,  a  day  or  two  later,  walking  with  a  cane. 

The  sacking  of  Aubry,  in  Johnson  county,  Kansas,  was  on 
the  7th  of  March,  1862.3     Andreas' s  History  of  Kansas,  usu- 


3  In  the  Gregg  Manuscript  this  event  is  placed  after  the  affair  at 
the  Tate  house.  Gregg  has  the  exact  date  of  the  attack  upon  Quantrill 
at  the  Tate  house.  But  official  reports  are  correct  as  to  dates  and  all 
other  authorities  must  give  way  to  them.  Gregg  informed  the  author  that 
he  saved  Lieutenant  Eandlett  from  death  at  Aubry  that  he  might  be  ex- 
changed for  Perry  Hoy,  who  had  been  captured  at  the  Tate  house.  The 
official  report  was  made  from  Fort  Leavenworth,  March  19,  and  says  intel- 
ligence of  the  affair  had  been  received  on  the  10th,  which  would  allow 
sufficient  time  after  the  7th  for  it  to  reach  Fort  Leavenworth. 

Eandlett  must  have  been  spared  for  some  other  than  the  assigned 
cause,  or  Hoy  was  captured  before  the  affair  at  the  Tate  house.  On  the 
25th  of  February,  1908,  the  author  discussed  this  matter  with  Mr.  Eandlett 
at  his  home,  706  Jefferson  street,  Topeka.  He  believes  the  man  he  was 
saved  to  be  exchanged  for  had  been  captured  at  Independence  by  Double- 
day  's  Second  Ohio,  on  the  22nd  of  February,  and  that  this  man 's  name  was 
Brady. 

In  a  letter  to  the  author,  dated  Kansas  City,  Mo.,  February  27,  1908, 
Captain  Gregg  says: 

No,  we  never  had  a  man  named  Brady.  One  or  two  of  Parker's  men 
were  captured  by  the  Ohioans  at  the  time  of  which  you  speak,  but  none  of 
ours,  and  Parker  had  no  man  by  that  name.  I  have  never  heard  of  any  one 
denying  that  Hoy  was  captured  at  the  Tate  House.  The  fact  is,  I  know 
that  Hoy  was  captured  there,  and,  notwithstanding  dates  to  the  contrary, 
I  know  that  Eandlett  was  captured  after  the  Tate  House  affair.  And  all 
the  circumstances  go  to  prove  that  I  am  correct.  I  have  perused  war 
records  to  considerable  extent  myself,  and  have  found  many  dates,  as  well 
as  narratives,  wrong. 

Captain  Gregg  is  relying  upon  his  memory  alone,  and  he  is  in  error 
as  to  this  date  and  the  order  in  which  these  events  occurred.  He  must 
do  like  all  good  soldiers  when  surrounded  and  no  chance  of  escape  is  seen  — 
surrender.  And  he  must  also  give  up  the  idea  that  it  was  Hoy  for  whom 
Lieutenant  Eandlett  was  saved  for  exchange,  for  it  was  a  man  named 
Brady. 

In  his  interview  with  Eandlett,  as  set  out  above,  the  author  urged 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  NOTORIOUS  225 

ally  so  complete  and  accurate,  gives  no  date.  It  mentions  the 
matter  indefinitely,  saying  that  ''Five  newly  arrived  citizens, 
who  went  out  one  evening  to  gather  honey,  promising  their  wives 
to  return  early,  were  murdered  by  Quantrill's  men,  and  the 
place  of  their  burial  is  not  known.  Greenbury  Trekle,  a  Mr. 

Whitaker,  Washington  Tullis,  Ellis  and  John  Cody,  all 

were  killed  by  border-ruffians."  There  is  nothing  here  to  con- 
nect the  men  named  with  the  affair  of  the  men  who  were  slain 
while  in  search  for  honey,  nor  is  it  said  that  they  were  killed 
at  the  sacking  of  the  town. 

Reuben  A.  Randlett  was  second  lieutenant  of  Company  A, 
Fifth  Kansas.  He  was  sent  home  on  sick-leave  in  the  winter  of 
1861-62.  While  yet  suffering  from  the  ague  he  started  to  re- 
turn to  his  command,  which  was  then  at  Barnesville,  Kansas. 
The  weather  was  still  cold.  He  left  Kansas  City,  Mo.,  the  morn- 
ing of  the  6th  of  March.  Night  coming  upon  him  at  Aubry,  he 
stopped  at  the  village  tavern.  There  he  was  given  a  room  with 
a  man  named  Ellis,  a  stranger  to  him.  At  daylight  the  following 
morning  the  landlord  knocked  loudly  at  the  door  of  their  room, 
advising  that  they  get  up  at  once,  as  the  guerrillas  were  coming 
into  town.  Randlett  remarked  that  such  means  to  get  them  up 
early  was  outrageous.  But  the  landlord  soon  returned  to  in- 
form them  that  the  guerrillas  were  surrounding  the  house.  The 

him  to  make  diligent  search  for  an  old  diary  he  said  he  had  kept  at  that 
time.  He  believed  he  had  the  diary,  but  had  failed  to  find  it  after  more 
than  one  long  search.  After  a  part  of  this  chapter  was  written  Bandlett 
found  the  diary  and  with  it  a  letter  written  to  him  by  Colonel  McNeil, 
commandant  of  the  post  at  Kansas  City,  and  he  has  exhibited  both  the 
diary  and  the  letter  to  the  author.  They  are  old  and  musty,  but  in  a 
good  state  of  preservation.  The  diary  fixes  the  date  beyond  dispute  as  the 
7th  day  of  March,  1862.  And  this  agrees  with  the  date  as  given  by 
Abraham  Ellis,  which  will  appear  in  his  letters  published,  post. 
Entries  in  the  diary  are  as  follows: 

Thursday,  March  6th,  62. 

Left  Kansas  City.  Took  dinner  at  Shawneetown.  Had  a  shake  and 
stopped  at  Aubrey. 

Friday,   7th. 

Taken  prisoner  by  Capt.  Quantrell. 

The  diary  shows  that  it  was  a  man  named  Brady  for  whom  Randlett 
was  saved  for   exchange. 
15 


226          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

night  had  been  cold,  and  the  window  panes  were  covered  with 
frost,  except  on  narrow  margins  next  to 
the  sash,  which  the  warmth  of  the  wood 
had  kept  clear.  Randlett  dressed  himself 
and  looked  out  of  the  window,  but  could 
see  no  one;  then  he  went  into  another 
room,  from  the  window  of  which  he  saw 
a  number  of  guerrillas,  and  he  heard 
shots  and  shouts  in  the  streets.  A  man, 
partly  dressed,  wanted  to  fight  the  guer- 
rillas, but  when  Randlett  found  that  all 
the  house  had  but  three  pistols  in  the  way 
of  arms  with  which  to  fight  forty  men  he 
advised  against  it.  He  said  to  the  others 

Lieut.  Reuben  A.  Randlett 

that  he  would  go  down   and  surrender. 

He  went  into  the  tavern  office  and  handed  his  revolver  to  a  guer- 
rilla he  found  there,  saying  that  he  was  a  Union  soldier  and 
demanded  the  treatment  due  a  soldier  who  surrendered.  He 
was  led  out  on  the  porch  and  turned  over  to  two  guerrillas  found 
there.  They  swore  horribly,  one  thrusting  the  muzzle  of  his 
pistol  into  Randlett 's  mouth  (this  was  Joe  Young,  after  the 
war  a  printer  at  Kansas  City)  and  the  other  holding  a  revolver 
at  his  ear.  Then  a  man  came  by,  believed  by  Randlett  to  have 
been  Quantrill,  but  Captain  Gregg  says  it  was  himself,  and 
ordered  Young  and  his  companion  not  to  injure  Randlett  as  he 
wanted  him  for  a  certain  purpose.  He  was  taken  into  the  office 
and  questioned  by  Quantrill,  who  asked  him  if  he  had  a  horse. 
Randlett  replied  that  he  had  a  good  mare  in  the  tavern  stables. 
Quantrill  at  once  ordered  it  saddled  and  brought  out.  Just 
then  Ellis  came  into  the  office  with  his  face  all  covered  with 
blood.  Quantrill  recognized  him  at  once  and  said,  "Why,  Ellis, 
is  that  you?"  Ellis  replied  that  it  was  himself  and  that  Quan- 
trill had  shot  him.  It  seems  that  Ellis  had  been  looking  out  of 
the  window,  with  his  face  near  the  sash  where  there  was  no 
frost.  Quantrill  saw  him  and  fired,  the  ball  going  through  the 
top  of  one  sash  and  the  bottom  of  the  other  where  they  joined 
in  the  middle  of  the  window  before  it  struck  Ellis  in  the  fore- 
head; the  sash  saved  his  life.  Randlett  did  not  know  then  that 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  NOTORIOUS  227 

the  bullet  had  gone  through  the  sash  before  striking  Ellis,  and 
supposed  it  had  gone  into  his  head  instead  of  flattening  against 
his  skull,  and  expected  to  see  him  fall  down  dead.  Ellis  had 
known  Quantrill  in  Lykins  (Miami)  county,  having  been  super- 
intendent of  schools  there,  where  he  examined  the  guerrilla  for 
a  certificate  to  teach.  Quantrill  talked  with  Ellis  for  some 
time,  and  told  him  to  hitch  up  his  team  and  go  on  his  way  and 
he  should  not  be  molested.  Randlett  wiped  the  blood  from 
Ellis 's  face.  Ellis  was  fastening  the  lines  to  the  bits  as  Quan- 
trill and  Randlett  rode  away,  and  Randlett  saw  him  fall  back- 
ward and  supposed  he  had  fallen  dead  from  his  wound.4  The 

4  In  the  Collection  of  the  author  are  two  letters  from  Ellis  to  W.  W. 
Scott.  Ellis  ran  a  newspaper  at  Elk  City,  Montgomery  county,  Kansas, 
after  the  war.  In  the  Kansas  legislature  of  1863  he  was  engrossing  clerk 
in  the  House,  and  not  a  member  as  his  letter  would  lead  one  to  believe. 
He  had  a  large  depression  in  his  forehead,  caused  by  the  wound  inflicted 
by  Quantrill,  and  was  known  as  "Bullet-Hole"  Ellis;  this  name  always 
stuck  to  him.  His  letters  contain  some  errors,  also  much  of  value,  and 
they  are  here  reproduced  in  part: 

Elk  City  Montgomery  Co  —  Kan  Jan  5th  1879 
ME.  W.  W.  Scott  — Dear  Sir 

My  first  acquaintance  with  William  C.  Quantrell  was  in  the  winter  of 
1858  &  1859 — [Error;  it  was  in  the  winter  of  1859-60;  see  QuantriU's 
letters,  ante.]  he  was  then  teaching  school  near  Stanton  in  Miami  County 
&  I  was  Superintendent  —  I  visited  his  school,  &  put  up,  at  his  board- 
ing house  —  I  found  him  an  interesting  well  educated  man  —  we  slept  to- 
gether &  talked  until  after  2  P.  M.  The  next  thing  I  heard  of  him  he 
had  turned  Abolitionist  &  was  acting  as  a  conductor  on  the  under  ground 
Railroad  &  assisting  Negroes  from  Missouri  to  Canada  —  But  he  was  not 
prompted  by  conscience,  or  pure  unadulterated  religion  —  as  he  was  never 
known  to  assist  any  Negro  unless  the  Negro  first  assisted  him  to  steal  a 
horse  or  mule  —  The  stock  was  Quantrells  &  the  Negro  passed  North  through 
Iowa  to  Canada.  .  .  .  And  my  next  interview  with  Quantrell  was  on  the 
7th  of  March,  1862  I  stopped  for  the  night  at  Aubrey  in  Johnson  county, 
Kan  —  Not  anticipating  any  trouble  —  But  at  daylight  I  was  awoke  by  the 
cry  —  The  cut  throats  are  coming  —  But  before  I  could  dress  the  house  was 
surrounded  &  they  were  yelling  &  screaming  &  swearing  like  Devils  —  and 
five  men  who  were  in  the  lower  rooms  started  to  run  across  the  fields  But 
were  soon  overtaken  and  butchered  there  were  five  of  us  up  stairs  (all 
travelers)  &  about  thirty  of  them  were  riddling  the  house  with  bullets 
while  these  men  were  being  butchered  in  the  field  &  I  was  carelessly  look- 
ing out  at  the  window  up  stairs  &  Quantrell  saw  me  through  the  window  & 
gave  me  a  dip  —  he  made  a  good  shot —  (or  as  he  afterwards  expressed  it, 
a  dam'd  good  shot)  I  was  struck  in  the  center  of  the  forehead  where  the 
brains  of  most  men  are  supposed  to  be  located  —  I  fell  &  was  supposed  to 
be  dead  —  the  others  then  went  down  stairs  &  surrendered  &  in  a  few  mo- 
ments Quantrell  &  two  others  of  the  gads  hill  Band  Came  up  stairs  —  each 
had  a  revolver  in  his  hand  —  with  the  hammer  raised  They  were  trembling 


228          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

proprietor  of  the  tavern  and  two  hired  hands  found  working 
for  him  were  chased  into  a  field  in  which  dry  cornstalks  were 
standing  and  there  killed  by  Quantrill  and  his  men. 

Randlett  was  with  Quantrill  from  the  7th  to  the  18th  of 
March.  He  was  released  before  the  affair  at  the  Tate  house. 
Whether  it  was  for  Perry  Hoy  or  some  other  member  of  his  band 
that  Quantrill  desired  to  exchange  him,  there  is  no  doubt  of  the 
fact  that  he  was  saved  alive  to  be  exchanged.  Quantrill  wrote 
several  letters  to  the  commandant  at  Port  Leavenworth  request- 
ing an  exchange  of  his  man  for  Randlett,  but  he  received  no 
reply,  as  he  and  his  men  were  considered  to  be  outlaws  and  not 
soldiers,  making  communication  with  them  impossible  from  a 
military  standpoint.  Quantrill  had  Randlett  write  requesting 
that  the  exchange  be  made,  which  he  did,  but  he  received  no 
answer  to  his  letter. 

While  Randlett  was  with  Quantrill  a  man  came  to  the  camp 

like  criminals  &  Swearing  like  Devils  &  to  give  an  idea  of  their  interest- 
ing language  —  I  will  give  a  few  detached  sentences  —  I  was  lieing  on 
a  mattress  at  the  head  of  the  stairs  &  they  had  been  told  by  the  prison- 
ers that  there  was  only  one  man  up  stairs  &  he  was  probably  dead  —  So 
Quantrell  and  two  others  started  up  stairs  &  as  soon  as  they  got  within 
about  four  feet  of  me  they  all  pointed  their  revolvers  at  my  head,  with 
their  fingers  on  the  trigger  —  at  last  one  of  them  balled  out  —  If  you  have 
any  money  God  damn  you  give  it  to  me  in  a  minute  or  I'll  blow  you  to 
Hell  and  as  I  had  no  hankering  after  [that]  place  —  I  passed  over  the 
checks  —  (or  in  other  words)  I  handed  him  $250.00  they  then  passed  on  & 
searched  the  rooms  &  I  heard  one  of  them  say,  that  he  had  found  a  pocket 
book  &  that  it  was  a  dam-d  fat  one  —  They  then  ordered  me  down  stairs  & 
said  that  I  was  not  dead  by  a  dam-d  sight  —  I  then  crawled  down  stairs  & 
was  helped  into  a  chair  &  in  a  few  minutes  Quantrell  came  down  stairs 
&  then  recognized  me  &  got  a  cloth  and  some  water  &  washed  my  face  & 
said  he  did  it  himself  &  was  dam-d  sorry  for  it  —  as  I  was  one  of  the 
Kansas  men  he  did  not  want  to  hurt  —  I  then  told  him  of  iny  team  &  about 
fifty  dollars  worth  of  groceries  that  were  there  in  the  house  he  said  that 
he  was  glad  that  I  had  told  him,  as  he  was  sorry  for  what  he  had  already 
done  &  said  that  not  one  thing  more  of  mine  should  be  touched  &  if  I  had 
then  thought  of  my  money  it  is  possible  that  that  he  might  have  given  it 
back  to  me  —  But  I  was  too  far  gone  to  think  of  money  &  soon  after  I 
fainted  away  &  lay  on  the  frozen  ground  about  four  hours  senseless  & 
motionless  &  to  all  appearances  dead  &  all  who  saw  me  pronounced  me  dead. 
I  was  really  supposed  to  [be]  dead  by  all  who  saw  me  &  if  any  of  my 
Ohio  friends  are  anxious  to  see  my  likeness  &  the  bullet  &  portions  of  my 
skull  bones  all  they  have  to  do,  is  to  call  at  the  army  Medicinal  Museum 
in  Washington  City  —  D.  C.  I  am  a  native  Buckeye  —  was  born  and 
raised  in  Green  County,  Ohio  —  But  the  only  redeeming  traits  I  ever  saw  in 
Quantrell  was  that  he  showed  by  his  kindness  to  me,  after  I  was  wounded 
that  he  was  not  entirely  a  Demon  —  But  history  will  record  him  a  desper- 
ately bad  man  —  a  highway  robber,  of  the  darkest  shade  &  a  desperate 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  NOTORIOUS  229 

one  day  and  said  the  Red  Legs  were  burning  houses  and  robbing 
people  in  Cass  county.  The  order  to  "saddle  up"  rang  through 
the  guerrilla  camp  at  once,  and  in  a  few  minutes  the  whole  band 
took  the  road.  Three  houses  were  found  on  fire.  The  Red  Legs 
retreated  when  they  saw  Quantrill  coming,  and  there  was  a  long 
and  exciting  chase  towards  the  Kansas  line.  At  a  point  near 
the  State  line,  about  east  of  Paola,  but  in  Missouri.  Quantrill 
overhauled  the  marauders.  A  brisk  skirmish  ensued  in  which 
some  of  the  Red  Legs  were  wounded,  but  none  killed.  Randlett's 
guard  took  him  up  on  a  high  place  where  he  could  see  the  en- 
gagement. 

One  Saturday  night  while  Quantrill  was  camped  somewhere 
in  Johnson  county,  Mo.,  there  broke  upon  the  air  the  sounds 
of  hoof-beats  rapidly  approaching.  The  guerrillas  were  stop- 
ping with  two  farmers,  their  friends,  one  living  on  one  road 
and  the  other  on  another  road;  these  roads  joined  about  a  half 
mile  from  the  farm-houses.  The  running  horses  rapidly 
approached,  and  soon  a  voice  was  heard  crying  out,  "Don't  shoot! 
don't  shoot!"  Two  horsemen  came  down  at  a  dead  run  and 
were  captured.  They  claimed  to  be  deserters  from  the  Union 
army  looking  for  Confederate  soldiers  to  join.  They  were  put 
under  guard  in  a  room  at  one  of  the  houses  and  questioned. 
Randlett  was  at  one  of  the  houses  under  guard,  and  the  pris- 
oners were  taken  to  the  other  house.  Quantrill  went  to  Randlett 

leader  of  a  set  of  the  most  desperate  Demons  that  ever  disgraced  the  name 
of  man  —  infinitely  worse  than  he  was.  None  of  them  with  bravery 
enough  to  meet  an  enemy  —  But  they  took  every  advantage  of  the  sur- 
roundings —  by  treachery  to  drench  the  earth  with  blood  &  carnage  — 

Abraham  Ellis 

In  this  letter  Ellis  says  Quantrill 's  Brother  Masons  helped  him 
escape  from  jail  at  Paola. 

There  has  been  much  controversy  as  to  whether  or  not  Quantrill  was 
a  Free  Mason.  It  is  not  probable  that  he  was.  Captain  Gregg  was  a 
Mason  during  his  service  under  Quantrill,  and  he  told  the  author  that  if 
Quantrill  was  a  Mason  he  never  made  the  fact  known  to  him.  It  may  be 
safely  said  that  he  never  was  a  member  of  the  Masonic  order. 

Following  are  extracts  from  the  second  letter  of  Ellis: 

Elk  City  Kan  Jan  18th  1879  — 
Mr.  W.  W.  Scott  — My  Dear  Sir  — 

I  received  yours  of  Jan  13th  a  day  of  two  ago,  &  I  will  endeavor  to 
comply  with  your  request  —  But  it  would  be  impossible  for  me  to  describe 
any  man  minutely  at  this  date,  with  whom  I  never  had  but  a  limited  ac- 


230          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

and  asked  him  if  he  would  like  to  see  the  prisoners,  and  Rand- 
lett  said  he  should  like  to  visit  them.  They  seemed  to  know 
that  Randlett  was  with  Quantrill,  and  they  had  advised  Quantrill 
that  Randlett  be  "strung  up"  without  delay;  this  was  reported 
to  Randlett  by  Quantrill.  Quantrill  and  Randlett  went  over  to 
the  house  together.  Before  going  in  Randlett  changed  coats 
with  the  guard,  and  the  prisoners  supposed  he  was  one  of  Quan- 
trill 's  men.  They  told  Randlett  that  the  Yankee  prisoner  ought 
to  be  hanged  at  once.  "When  Randlett  came  out  Quantrill  asked 
him  what  he  thought  of  the  prisoners.  Randlett  said  he  believed 
they  were  thieves  or  spies.  Shortly  after  Randlett  arrived  again 
at  the  house  where  he  was  stopping  he  heard  a  volley ;  he  never 
saw  the  prisoners  again;  no  one  ever  mentioned  them  after 
that;  Randlett  had  no  doubt  about  their  having  been  shot,  and 
very  little  doubt  but  that  they  deserved  it. 

As  nothing  could  be  heard  from  the  Federal  authorities 
about  the  exchange,  Quantrill  proposed  to  parole  Randlett  for 
a  period  of  ten  days  and  send  him  to  Fort  Leavenworth  to  see 
if  he  could  effect  the  exchange.  This  being  agreeable  to  Rand- 
lett, Quantrill  marched  to  Independence.  It  was  a  rainy  winter 

quaintance,  But  he  was  a  well  built  man  light  hair  blue  eyes  —  round  face, 
pleasant  countenance,  with  little  or  no  beard  (at  the  time  he  was  teaching 
school  at  Stantoii)  &  in  my  opinion  he  would  not  weigh  more  than  140 
or  45  Ibs  —  But  when  I  saw  him  at  Aubrey  —  he  had  changed  in  appear- 
ance —  he  had  Mustash  &  Side  whiskers  &  both  had  a  red  tinge  &  at  that 
time,  he  had  assumed  the  appearance  of  a  desperado  —  yet  he  could  be 
pleasant  at  times  —  He  talked  kindly  to  me  a  few  minutes  after  he  recog- 
nized me  &  promised  not  to  disturb  any  more  of  my  property  &  when  he 
was  about  to  leave,  he  discovered  that  one  of  my  horses  had  been  taken  & 
he  inquired  who  took  it  &  was  told  —  he  immediately  ordered  one  of  his 
men  to  go  &  tell  him  to  bring  that  horse  back  immediately  or  it  would  be 
the  last  time  that  he  would  disobey  orders  This  conversation  was  heard 
by  the  women  —  I  was  lieing  on  the  ground  near  them,  at  that  time  but 
had  quit  hearing  things  —  the  horse  was  returned  At  the  time  I  was 
wounded  I  was  post  Quartermaster  &  stationed  at  Barnesville  —  a  small 
town  on  the  eastern  border  of  Kansas  about  eighty  miles  south  of  Kansas 
City,  Mo.  I  was  stationed  there  in  Sept — 1861  —  I  had  served  as  a  mem- 
ber of  the  first  State  Legislature  that  closed  its  labors  June  20th  1861  — 
&  after  I  was  wounded  in  March  I  laid  in  the  shade  until  about  the  last 
of  August.  .  .  .  My  residence  at  the  time  I  was  wounded  was  near  New 
Lancaster  —  a  small  village  on  the  eastern  border  of  Miami  Co,  Kan.  .  .  . 

A.  Ellis. 

Eandlett  says  Quantrill  did  not  touch  Ellis,  and  did  not  wash  the 
blood  from  his  face  as  Ellis  claims,  after  he  came  down  stairs.  And 
Eandlett  says  Quantrill  did  not  go  up  stairs  at  all. 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  NOTORIOUS  231 

day.  On  the  road  a  man  stopped  the  band  and  said  he  had 
something  for  the  men.  He  produced  from  a  capacious  bag 
swung  to  his  saddle-horn  a  corpulent  jug  of  apple-jack  and  gave 
each  man  a  liberal  drink.  Quantrill  told  him  to  give  Randlett 
some.  This,  it  seems,  he  had  entertained  no  notion  of  doing, 
but  upon  being  directed  to  do  so,  replied,  "Yes,  I  will  give  the 

some, ' '  and  handed  Randlett  a  stiff  drink, 

which  was  relished  greatly.  At  Independence  Quantrill  left 
Randlett  in  a  hotel  at  the  northeast  corner  of  the  public  square. 
Before  he  went  out  he  wrote  on  a  sheet  of  paper  secured  from 
the  hotel  table  the  necessary  papers  for  Randlett  to  take  with 
him  to  Leavenworth  in  the  matter  of  his  exchange.  Having  done 
this,  Quantrill  and  his  men  rode  out  of  town  and  were  gone 
several  hours. 

The  rain  had  dripped  from  Randlett 's  overcoat  and  soaked 
his  shoes,  making  his  feet  cold.  As  he  sat  at  a  stove  trying  to 
warm  himself  Randlett  noticed  that  men  began  to  gather  at  the 
hotel  to  see  the  "prisoner."  They  drank  whiskey  at  the  hotel 
bar  and  soon  became  boisterous.  "Whoops  and  yells  could  be 
heard  in  the  streets,  and  Randlett  heard  threats  made  there  to  go 
in  and  kill  the  prisoner.  It  was  necessary  for  Randlett  to  get 
out  of  the  way,  and  he  determined  to  leave  the  hotel  at  once,  let 
the  consequences  be  what  they  might.  He  got  up  and  walked 
to  the  interior  of  the  house-lobby  or  general  room,  in  doing  which 
his  attention  was  called  to  a  man  leaning  on  the  bar.  He  was 
an  old  man,  and  said  nothing,  but  pointed  to  a  dooor  which  Rand- 
lett entered  and  found  himself  in  the  dining-room.  The  old 
man  came  in  soon  and  told  Randlett  he  was  in  great  danger, 
and  said,  "I  am  the  friend  of  any  soldier."  He  went  to  the 
doors  of  the  room  and  after  a  little  while  told  Randlett  that  the 
coast  was  clear  for  a  minute,  and  led  him  into  an  alley,  then 
through  several  alleys,  and  finally  to  a  large  stable  just  off  the 
northeast  corner  of  the  public  square.  There  he  told  Randlett 
to  get  into  a  manger,  and  after  Randlett  had  done  so,  he  filled  it 
with  hay,  saying  that  if  any  one  came  he  should  pull  the  hay  up 
over  him  and  conceal  himself  —  that  the  horse  would  be  eating 
the  hay  but  would  not  injure  him.  In  a  short  time  he  brought 
the  postmaster  to  see  Randlett.  The  postmaster  handed  Rand- 


232          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

lett  a  letter  from  the  military  authorities  in  Kansas  City.  Rand- 
lett  inquired  why  it  had  not  been  delivered  to  him.  The  post- 
master told  him  that  he  had  heard  the  letter  read  by  the  colonel 
who  wrote  it  and  he  knew  that  its  delivery  meant  the  death  of 
Randlett.s 

When  Quantrill  returned  with  his  men  to  Independence, 
Mr.  Perry  (the  old  man  who  had  been  Randlett 's  friend  all  day) 
hunted  him  up  and  told  him  where  Randlett  was  and  how  he 
came  to  be  there.  Quantrill  and  this  old  man  were  friends, 
though  Perry  was  openly  a  Union  man.  He  carried  letters  to 
Kansas  City  for  Quantrill  and  was  useful  to  the  guerrilla  in 
many  other  ways.  Quantrill  thanked  him  for  his  care  and  dis- 
cretion and  requested  him  to  see  Randlett  safely  off  for  Kansas 
City  the  next  morning.  Perry  had  a  large  tavern  building,  in 
which  he  lived,  but  which  he  was  allowing  to  remain  idle,  having 
closed  out  his  business.  But  he  and  his  wife  lived  in  the  build- 
ing, and  Perry  was  running  a  stable  which  was  attached  to  the 
tavern  building.  Quantrill  remained  with  Perry  till  late  in  the 
night,  and  Mrs.  Perry  prepared  a  good  supper  for  her  husband, 
Quantrill,  and  Randlett.  Quantrill  left  the  house  about  ten 

0  'clock  at  night  and  marched  his  band  out  of  town. 

The  next  morning  at  three  o'clock  Randlett  was  called  up 

5  This  was  on  Tuesday,  the  18th  day  of  March,  1862.  The  entry  in 
Eandlett's  diary  for  that  date  reads: 

Tuesday,  March  18,  '62. 
Eeleased  at  Independence  on  Parole  of  honor  for  10  days. 

The  letter  was  discovered  by  Eandlett  in  his  search  for  his  diary, 
mentioned  before  in  this  chapter,  and  is  as  follows: 

Kansas  City,  March  17/62 
Lieut.  E.  A.  Eandlett, 

Sir: 

Yours  of  this  date  is  received.     I  would  say  in 

answer  that  the  communications  of  the  Bandit  Quantrell  is  whose  hands 
you  have  unfortunately  fallen  was  forwarded  to  Colonel  Weer  at  Wyandotte 
and  referred  to  General  Hunter  and  by  the  Colonel  sent  to  Leavenworth. 

1  have  received  no  answer  but  I  can  assure  you  that  you  will  soon  be  lib- 
erated and  if  the  party  who  holds  you  dares  harm  a  hair  of  your  head  they 
will  one  and  all  be  hung  when  taken  which  is  now  only  a  matter  of  time 
and  that  time  short. 

Yours   very   Eespectfully, 
John  McNeil, 

Colonel. 

Colonel  McNeil  was  then  commanding  the  post  at  Kansas  City. 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  NOTORIOUS  233 

by  Perry  and  found  a  good  breakfast  ready  for  him  and  his  mare 
saddled.  He  and  Perry  rode  to  Kansas  City  together.  There 
Perry  left  him,  and  he  went  at  once  to  Colonel  McNeil's  office, 
on  Union  avenue.  "When  Randlett  reported  to  the  colonel  and 
made  himself  known  McNeil  abused  Quantrill,  but  said  he  was 
busy,  and  requested  that  Randlett  return  at  eight  o  'clock.  "When 
Randlett  returned  to  the  office  he  found  the  colonel  and  a  captain 
standing  before  a  big  map  which  was  hanging  on  the  wall.  The 
colonel  said  as  Randlett  entered,  "Here  he  is  now."  Then  he 
told  Randlett  that  the  captain  was  to  be  sent  out  with  a  com- 
pany to  destroy  Quantrill,  and  that  Randlett  was  to  go  along 
as  guide.  Randlett  said  he  would  not  go;  that  he  was  in  honor 
bound  to  carry  out  his  agreement  with  Quantrill  and  would  not 
go  with  the  captain.  Words  rose  high  and  Randlett  said  to  the 

colonel:    "I  will  not  go,  and  d n  you,  you  can't  make-  me 

go,"  and  with  that  he  left  the  room  in  haste  and  descended 
a  stairway  so  hurriedly  that  he  ran  against  Colonel  Weer  and 
knocked  him  off  the  sidewalk.  Randlett  had  started  to  find  the 
colonel  and  was  glad  to  find  him  so  easily;  he  immediately 
related  his  story.  Colonel  Weer  told  Randlett  that  orders  had 
just  arrived  for  McNeil  to  turn  over  the  command  to  some 
other  officer,  and  he  would  not  have  anything  more  to  say  in  the 
matter.  Randlett  was  allowed  to  proceed  to  Leavenworth,  where 
he  went  over  his  case  with  General  Sturgis,  but  found  his  posi- 
tion the  same  as  that  of  Colonel  McNeil  —  he  would  have  noth- 
ing to  do  with  Quantrill  and  would  hold  no  communication 
with  him,  as  he  was  an  outlaw.  Randlett  was  permitted  to  do  as 
he  pleased,  but  advised  not  to  return  to  Quantrill.  But  Rand- 
lett considered  himself  in  honor  bound  to  go  back  to  him  and 
report  the  facts  as  he  found  them.  When  he  arrived  at  Inde- 
pendence he  found  twelve  hundred  Union  soldiers  quartered 
in  the  town.  No  one  could  tell  him  where  to  find  Quantrill. 
Just  such  an  emergency  had  been  provided  for,  and  Randlett  had 
been  told  to  whom  he  should  report  if  Quantrill  could  not  be 
found.  This  he  did,  and  then  returned  to  Kansas  City.  He 
never  saw  Quantrill  again.6 

6  The  following  is  taken  from  the  Gregg  Manuscript : 

Soon  after  the  affair  at  the  Tate  House  Quantrill  made  a  raid  on 


234          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

It  is  probable  that  Randlett  at  first  told  Quantrill  his  name 
was  Brown.  When  captured  by  the  border-ruffians  in  May, 
1856,  he  gave  his  name  as  R.  A.  Brown.  The  Gregg  Manuscript 
says  that  Quantrill  released  Randlett  after  his  return  from  Port 
Leaven  worth.  The  entries  in  Randlett 's  diary  would  bear  out 
his  statement  that  he  never  again  saw  Quantrill  after  leaving 
Independence  to  go  to  Fort  Leaven  worth,  two  of  these  entries 
being  as  follows: 

Monday,  March  24. — Arrived  at  Fort  Leavenworth  but 
could  do  nothing  in  regard  to  the  release  or  exchange  of  Brady. 

Friday,  March  28. — At  Kansas  City  —  Went  to  Indepen- 
dence and  returned. 

The  official  report  of  the  affair  at  Aubry  is  as  follows :  ? 

Sir: 

I  have  the  honor  to  report  that  on  the  10th  instant  I  received 
intelligence  that  the  rebel  Quantrill  had  with  his  band  entered 
Johnson  County,  in  this  State,  and  murdered  several  citizens  at 
Aubrey,  in  said  county,  and  carried  away  quite  an  amount  of 
property.  I  was  instructed  from  Headquarters  of  the  then 
Department  of  Kansas  to  take  such  steps  as  were  necessary  to 
protect  the  citizens  of  the  exposed  region.  I  accordingly  sent 
orders  to  Capt.  John  Greelish,  Company  E,  Eighth  Regiment 
Kansas  Volunteers,  to  move  his  command  immediately  from 
Olathe,  Kansas,  to  Aubrey,  and  to  take  such  measures  as  he 
deemed  best  to  defend  the  citizens  of  that  locality.  Two  days 
after  a  skirmish  took  place  near  Aubrey  between  about  30  men 

Aubry,  Kansas,  seven  or  eight  miles  south  from  Santa  Fe,  for  the  pur- 
pose of  securing  horses  to  remount  the  men.  We  arrived  there  about  sun- 
rise, and  captured  a  number  of  good  horses.  We  captured,  also,  a  Lieuten- 
ant belonging  to  a  Kansas  cavalry  regiment;  his  name  was  Brown,  and  we 
held  him  to  exchange  for  Perry  Hoy,  who  was  then  held  a  prisoner  at  Fort 
Leavenworth.  We  kept  this  Lieutenant  three  or  four  weeks.  He  was  a 
splendid  fellow,  and  we  all  became  much  attached  to  him.  We  allowed  him 
the  liberty  of  the  camp  and  lines,  and  his  uniform  alone  distinguished 
him  from  one  of  our  men.  During  his  detention  Quantrill  wrote  the  com- 
manding officer  at  Fort  Leavenworth  proposing  to  exchange  Lieutenant 
Brown  for  private  Perry  Hoy;  but  he  received  no  reply.  Finally  after 
waiting  some  days,  Quantrill  paroled  the  Lieutenant  and  sent  him  to  Fort 
Leavenworth  to  effect  the  exchange.  Within  a  week  or  ten  days  he  returned 
and  informed  Quantrill  that  the  commander  at  the  Fort  refused  to  make 
the  exchange. 

7  Eebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  VIII,  p.  335.  Eeport  of  Colonel 
Eobert  H.  Graham,  Eighth  Kansas  Infantry,  to  Major  General  H.  W.  Hal- 
leek,  Commanding  the  Department  of  the  Mississippi,  dated,  Headquarters 
Eighth  Eegiment,  Kans.  Vols.,  Leavenworth,  March  19,  1862. 


QUANTRILL  BECOMES  NOTORIOUS  235 

of  his  company,  under  First  Lieutenant  Rose  and  a  portion  of 
Quantrill's  band.  From  the  official  report  [not  found,  the  edi- 
tors say]  of  Captain  Greelish  I  learn  that  it  resulted  in  the 
retreat  of  Quantrill,  with  a  loss  of  2  killed  and  several  wounded. 
Several  horses  were  also  killed.  On  his  retreat  Quantrill  drove 
a  family  from  their  home  and  burned  their  house. 

On  our  side  none  killed,  and  but  1  wounded  —  private 
Charles  Cooney,  severely  in  the  foot.  ...... 

I  am  fully  satisfied  that  I  cannot  as  provost-marshal-general, 
protect  the  state  from  guerrilla  parties  from  without  and  the 
depredations  of  the  horde  of  jayhawkers  within  in  the  present 
scattered  condition  of  my  regiment  without  several  companies 
of  cavalry. 


CHAPTER  XVII 

QUANTRILL  OUTLAWED  —  BIG  BLUE  BRIDGE  —  TATE  HOUSE 

BY  ALL  the  rules  of  civilized  warfare  Quantrill  and  his 
men  were  subject  to  outlawry,  and  early  in  March,  1862, 
the  Federal  authorities  formally  declared  them  outlaws. 
The  order  was  issued  by  General  Halleck,  Commander  of  the 
Department  of  the  Mississippi.1     Quantrill  first  learned  of  the 

i  This  order  has  not  been  found.  General  Totten,  commanding  at 
Jefferson  City,  issued  orders  outlawing  the  guerrillas,  set  out  here.  Found 
in  Rebellion  Records,  Series  II,  Vol.  Ill,  p.  468: 

Special^  Orders,    )  Headqrs    j)istrict  of  Central  Missouri. 

Jefferson   City,  Mo.,  April  21,   1862. 

I.  It  is  represented  on  reliable  authority  at  these  headquarters  that 
bands  of  Jayhawkers,  guerrillas,  marauders,  murderers  and  every  species  of 
outlaw  are  infesting  to  an  alarming  extent  all  the  southwestern  portion  of 
Jackson  County,  and  that  persons  of  influence  and  wealth  in  these  vicinities 
are  knowingly  harboring  and  thus  encouraging  (if  not  more  culpably  con- 
nected with)  these  bands  of  desperadoes.     A  prairie  known  as  the  "Doctor 
Lee  Prairie,"  its  borders  and  surroundings,  are  mentioned  as  the  haunts 
of  these  outlaws  and  the  farmers  generally  in  these  neighborhoods  are  said 
to  be  knowing  to  and  encouraging  the  lawless  acts  of  these  guerrillas,  etc., 
as  mentioned  above.     Murders  and  robberies  have  been  committed;  Union 
men  threatened  and  driven  from  their  homes;  the  U.  S.  mails  have  been 
stopped;  farmers  have  been  prohibited  planting  by  the  proclamation  of  a 
well-known  and  desperate  leader  of  these  outlaws  by  the  name  of  Quan- 
trill, and  the  whole  country  designated  reduced  to  a  state  of  anarchy.     This 
state  of  things  must  be  terminated  and  the  guilty  punished.     All  those 
found  in  arms  and  open  opposition  to  the  laws  and  legitimate  authorities, 
who  are  known  familiarly  as  guerrillas,  Jayhawkers,  murderers,  marauders, 
and  horse-thieves,  will  be  shot  down  by  the  military  upon  the  spot  when 
found  perpetrating  their  foul  acts.     All  who  have  knowingly  harbored  or 
encouraged  these  outlaws  in  their  lawless  deeds  will  be  arrested  and  tried 
by  a  military  commission  for  their  offenses,  and  those  who  have  harbored 
and  fed  such  miscreants  as  guerrillas,  etc.,  but  against  whom  clear  proof 
cannot  be  obtained  and  who  profess  ignorance  of  having  done  these  wrongs 
will  be  put  under  heavy  bonds  and  security  for  their  future  good  conduct 
or  confined  until  they  give  such  bonds,  etc. 

II.  In  order  to  correct  the  evils  mentioned  in  the  preceding  para- 
graph and  insure  the  passage  of  the  mails  regularly,  Lieut.  E.  B.  Brown, 
Seventh  Missouri  Volunteers,  commanding  the  counties  of  Jackson  and  Cass 
will  station  one  company  of  cavalry  about  five  miles  north  of  Pleasant  Hill 
on  the  southern  and  one  company  on  the  northern  border  of  the  "Doctor 


QUANTRILL  OUTLAWED  237 

issuance  of  this  order  on  the  night  of  the  19th  of  March,  1862, 
while  he  and  sixty  of  his  men  were  quartered  in  the  little  Blue 
Baptist  church,  about  twelve  miles  southeast  of  Independence.2 
This  intelligence  came  through  the  medium  of  the  Missouri 
Republican.  After  Quantrill  had  read  the  order  he  mounted 
his  men  and  read  it  to  them,  carefully  explaining  to  them  that 
they  were  all  deprived  of  the  benefits  of  the  civil  or  military  laws, 
that  from  that  day  no  quarter  would  be  given  them,  and  that 
Federal  soldiers  would  hang  or  shoot  them  at  once,  wherever 
captured  or  found.  He  gave  his  men  an  opportunity  to  remain 
with  him  or  not  as  they  might  wish,  for  men  choosing  outlawry 
must  make  the  choice  freely  and  voluntarily  if  anything  worth 
while  is  to  be  accomplished  by  them.  There  were  twenty  men 
from  Johnson  county,  Mo.,  in  the  force,  and  these  rode  out, 
abandoned  him,  and  rode  home.  But  by  so  doing  they  had  not 
improved  their  condition.  They  were  still  outlaws,  and  when 
this  fact  impressed  itself  upon  them,  they  returned  to  Quantrill 
after  the  absence  of  a  month.  Many  young  men  of  Jackson 
county,  already  in  the  brush,  now  joined  Quantrill,  and  by  the 
22d  of  March,  1862,  his  command  numbered  more  than  a  hun- 
dred men. 

Quantrill  could  not  let  his  men  remain  inactive.  If  he 
could  not  keep  them  constantly  employed  his  band  would  disin- 
tegrate and  disappear.  After  reading  the  order  of  outlawry  to 
his  men  he  immediately  left  the  Little  Blue  church  and  marched 

Lee  Prairie"  to  punish  these  guerrillas  and  escort  the  mail  in  safety  when- 
ever necessary. 

III.  Major  Carley,  commanding  post  at  Warrensburg,  will  send  one 
company  First  Iowa  Cavalry  to  proceed  to  Pleasant  Hill  and  escort  the 
mail  now  there  through  to  Independence,  when  it  will  return  again  to 
its  present  post. 

By  order  of  Brig.  Gen.  James  Totten,  commanding  district. 

Lucien  J.  Barnes, 
Captain  and  Assistant  Adjutant-General. 

*F.  Luther  Wayman,  Muskogee,  Oklahoma,  told  the  author,  in  April, 
1909,  that  this  was  an  old  log  church,  "eight-cornered"  or  octagonal  in 
form.  He  also  said  that  when  Quantrill  had  read  the  order  over  to  himself 
and  reflected  on  it  a  few  minutes,  he  stood  on  a  bench  and  explained  it  to 
his  men.  Then  he  said  to  the  prisoner,  Lieutenant  Eandlett,  "What  do 
you  think  of  that,  lieutenant?"  Bandlett  replied:  "I  could  not  blame 
you  for  shooting  me,  now."  After  some  joking,  Quantrill  said,  "Not  a 
hair  of  your  head  shall  be  harmed." 


to  the  house  of  Captain  Deering,  four  miles  south  of  Indepen- 
dence, and  camped.  This  movement  was  in  consequence  of  infor- 
mation which  he  had  received  to  the  effect  that  Independence 
was  held  by  a  force  of  but  seventy-five  Union  soldiers.  He 
believed  he  could  defeat  that  force  and  that  he  might  possibly 
capture  it,  in  which  event  he  would  see  what  the  Federal  authori- 
ties might  think  of  what  an  outlaw  could  do  in  the  line  of  retali- 
ation. But  when  Captain  Deering  arrived  at  home  from  Inde- 
pendence he  told  Quantrill  that  three  hundred  additional  troops 
had  been  sent  to  the  town.  Quantrill  did  not  dare  attack  so 
many,  and  he  was  inactive  until  the  morning  of  the  22d  of  March. 
On  that  day  he  decided  to  sweep  about  the  south  skirts  of  Kan- 
sas City  in  search  of  adventure.  At  Pitcher's  Mill  he  struck  the 
Westport  road.  From  that  point  a  small  scouting  party  was 
sent  in  advance.  This  party  captured  a  Federal  sergeant  at 
the  Big  Blue  bridge,  now  known  as  Twenty-seventh  Street 
bridge.  The  sergeant  was  disarmed  and  dismounted  just  as 
Quantrill  came  up  with  the  main  body  of  his  men.  Fully  to 
impress  them  with  the  condition  in  which  they  found  themselves 
as  the  result  of  the  order  of  outlawry,  as  well  as  to  set  an  example 
which  should  be  followed  faithfully  by  them  all  in  the  future, 
Quantrill  drew  his  pistol  and  shot  the  sergeant  dead.  Then 
facing  his  command,  he  flourished  his  smoking  revolver  aloft 
and  cried  in  a  loud  voice: 

"Boys,  Halleck  issued  the  order,  but  we  draw  the  first 
blood!" 

While  the  blood  of  the  sergeant  was  still  running  red  upon 
the  ground  an  old  man  and  his  son,  a  small  boy,  came  out  of  the 
city  upon  the  highway  leading  across  this  bridge.  The  man  was 
seized,  accused  of  being  a  spy  and  informer,  given  a  brief  trial, 
convicted  and  immediately  shot  in  the  presence  of  the  child. 
Then  the  bridge  was  burned,  the  command  mounted  and  marched 
away  from  its  victory,  leaving  a  dead  soldier,  a  dead  citizen,  a 
terrorized  orphan  boy  weeping  by  the  corpse  of  his  murdered 
father. 

It  was  still  early  in  the  day,  and  the  guerrilla  band  rode 
to  the  Majors  farm,  eighteen  miles  southeast  of  Kansas  City,  in 
time  for  dinner.  Here  Quantrill  lingered  until  near  night, 


QUANTRILL  OUTLAWED  239 

when  he  took  his  men  to  the  house  of  David  Tate,  near  the 
State-line,  and  near  the  station  now  known  as  Red  Bridge,  about 
three  miles  south  of  Little  Santa  Fe.  Quantrill  and  twenty  of  his 
men  stopped  with  Tate.  Gregg  and  Todd,  with  ten  men,  stopped 
at  the  Wyatt  farm,  a  mile  south  of  the  Tate  house.  Hallar, 
with  a  squad,  went  south  beyond  the  Wyatt  homestead  to  find 
lodging  with  a  friendly  farmer,  and  Kerr  went  still  south  of 
Hallar. 

Quantrill  and  his  men  believed  that  some  one  living  near  the 
Tate  house  went  to  the  Union  troops  and  notified  them  of  their 
presence  at  Tate's  farm.  Tate  was  already  under  suspicion  at 
headquarters  in  Kansas  City.  He  had  been  aiding  Quantrill,  if 
not  actually  a  member  of  his  band  occasionally,  and  this  was  not 
the  first  time  he  had  harbored  a  guerrilla  band.  Plans  for  his 
capture  had  been  under  consideration  for  some  time  before  this 
date.  When  it  was  known  in  Kansas  City  that  Quantrill  had 
burned  the  Big  Blue  bridge  and  turned  southwestward  it  was 
believed  that  he  would  go  to  the  vicinity  of  the  Tate  house. 
Major  Banzhaf,  First  Battalion  Missouri  Cavalry,  notified  Col- 
onel Robert  B.  Mitchell,  Second  Kansas  Cavalry,  of  the  move- 
ments of  Quantrill,  and  requested  him  to  come  to  his  assistance 
with  troops.  Colonel  Mitchell  left  Kansas  city  at  6:30  P.  M., 
of  the  22d,  and  arrived  at  Little  Santa  Fe  about  ten  o'clock 
the  same  evening.  He  immediately  made  a  detail  from  Com- 
pany D,  to  be  commanded  by  .Captain  Amaziah  Moore,  and 
one  from  Company  E,  to  be  commanded  by  Lieutenant  Elias  S. 
Stover.  He  put  this  detachment  under  the  command  of  Major 
James  M.  Pomeroy  (Second  Kansas)  and  sent  it  to  capture  and 
bring  in  David  Tate. 

When  Major  Pomeroy  reached  the  Tate  house  he  demanded 
admittance.  The  response  to  this  demand  was  a  shot  fired 
through  the  door,  doing  no  harm.  He  then  called  on  the  inmates 
to  surrender,  to  which  no  answer  was  made.  He  then  ordered 
them  to  send  out  their  women  and  children,  if  any  were  in  the 
house.  Nothing  was  said  in  answer  to  this  demand,  but  revolver- 
shots  were  fired  from  the  windows.  Quantrill  was  stacking  fur- 
niture and  bedding  against  the  doors  and  windows  all  this  time. 
Major  Pomeroy  ordered  his  men  to  fire  a  volley  into  the  house. 


240          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 


This  resulted  in  the  cries  of  women  and  children,  and  he  ordered 
the  firing  to  cease.  The  women  and  children  came  out  of  the 
house  and  were  sent  to  a  place  of  safety,  and  both  sides  began 
firing.  At  this  point  two  men  came  out  through  a  window  and 
surrendered,  stating  that  Quantrill  and  twenty-six  men  were  in 
the  house.  Major  Pomeroy  then  notified  the  inmates  that  he 
would  burn  the  house  unless  they  surrendered  at  once.  Upon 
their  refusal  to  surrender  an  attempt  was  made  to  set  the  house 
on  fire,  but  the  part  against  which  the  fire  was  kindled  was  of 
logs,  and  it  did  not  take  fire  until  the  light  material  was  burned 
up.  In  this  attempt  to  fire  the  house  Major  Pomeroy  and  a  pri- 
vate were  shot.  The  wound  of  Major  Pomeroy  disabled  him,  and 
Captain  Moore  took  command  and  sent  to  Colonel  Mitchell  for 
reinforcements.  He  gave  the  inmates  notice  that  the  house 
would  be  fired  unless  they  surrendered  immediately,  and  as  there 
was  no  response  the  house  was  set  on  fire  and  burned  rapidly. 
Quantrill  had  expected  the  house  to  be  set  on  fire,  and  his 
movements  had  been  directed  to  finding  a  means  to  escape. 
Nothing  to  further  this  design  had  presented  itself.  Now  he  saw 
that  he  must  leave  without  delay.  Per- 
haps the  red  blood  spilled  at  Big  Blue 
bridge  that  morning  did  not  cry  from 
the  ground  with  enough  force  to  influence 
him.  There  was  already  too  much  on  his 
hands  for  that  of  two  men  to  make  any 
material  addition.  He  was  cool  and  col- 
lected. In  searching  the  lower  portions 
of  the  house  for  a  means  of  exit  he  came 
upon  a  part  of  the  wall  made  only  of 
weatherboarding.  Marshaling  his  men  in 
this  room,  he  broke  down  the  wall  with 
some  article  of  furniture  and  made  a 
breach  large  enough  to  admit  him  and  his 
men.  They  tumbled  out  helter-skelter  and  dashed  into  the  thick 
brush  and  timber  growing  near-by  and  were  lost  in  the  dark- 
ness. As  they  ran  from  the  house  two  of  them  were  shot  down, 
one  killed  and  one  mortally  wounded ;  be  died  the  following  day. 
When  the  prisoners  came  out  of  the  window  they  reported  that 


$m 

WilluunHulK 


QUANTRILL  OUTLAWED  241 

four  or  five  guerrillas  were  wounded,  and  Colonel  Mitchell  could 
plainly  see  five  bodies  in  the  burning  building  when  he  arrived. 
Colonel  Mitchell  says  he  took  six  prisoners,  so  the  loss  of  Quan- 
trill  must  have  been  at  least  seven  men 'killed  and  six  prisoners, 
thirteen  all  told.  The  two  men  killed  outside  the  house  were 
brothers  named  Rollen. 

The  Union  loss  was  Major  Pomeroy  wounded,  and  private 
William  Wills  dangerously  wounded  in  the  right  arm  near  the 
shoulder  with  a  minnie  ball  and  in  the  groin  with  buck-shot, 
dying  afterwards.  The  guerrillas  lost  their  horses  and  all  their 
horse-equipments. 

Colonel  Mitchell  led  his  men  to  an  attack  upon  the  Wyatt 
homestead,  leaving  the  Tate  house  at  6 :30  A.  M.  Upon  his 
approach  the  men  there  fled  to  the  timber,  which  was  near  the 
house.  He  dismounted  some  of  his  men  and  sent  them  into  the 
woods  in  pursuit,  and  they  captured  two  of  the  guerrillas. 

Few  commanders  would  have  escaped  from  this  burning 
building  with  any  of  their  men.  Quantrill's  actions  there  showed 
courage  and  ability.  But  he  was  fighting  for  his  life,  as  was 
every  man  with  him.  They  knew  they  were  outlaws.  They  had 
accepted  the  challenge  and  had  shed  the  first  blood  under  the 
new  order.  Their  lives  were  forfeited.  Surrender  meant  death. 
Knowing  this,  they  believed  they  might  as  well  die  fighting.  All 
the  desperate  courage  of  these  guerrillas  came  from  the  position 
in  which  the  order  of  outlawry  placed  them.  The  old  excuse 
originated  by  Major  Edwards,  that  each  man  had  a  private 
personal  grievance,  was  never  anything  but  an  excuse.  It  stated 
no  fact.  Men  in  the  regular  and  volunteer  service  lost  fathers 
and  brothers  and  property,  but  they  did  not  become  blood-mad 
because  of  it.  Many  of  the  events  named  as  the  causes  of  des- 
perate deeds  by  guerrillas  occurred  long  after  the  bloody  actions 
they  were  made  to  justify  at  a  later  date. 

Some  parts  of  the  official  report  of  Colonel  Mitchell  are 
given  here  that  the  truth  may  be  compared  with  the  fiction  of 
Major  Edwards.3 

3  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  VIII,  pp.  346-47.   Eeport  of  Colonel 
Robert  B.  Mitchell,  Second  Kansas  Cavalry,  to  Major  W.  E.  Blair,  Com'd'g, 
Leavenworth,  Kansas. 
16 


242          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Hdqrs,  Second  Regiment  Kansas  Volunteers, 

Camp  Blair,  March  24,  1862. 
Major : 

I  have  the  honor  to  report  that  on  the  night  of  the  22d,  in 
accordance  with  a  request  from  Major  Banzhaf,  commanding 
First  Battalion  Missouri  Cavalry,  and  also  in  pursuance  of  a 
pJan  that  I  had  been  maturing  for  some  time,  I  left  camp  with  a 
detachment  detailed  from  all  the  companies  in  this  command, 
the  detachment  about  300  in  number,  with  Majors  Fisk  and 
Pomeroy. 

Quantrill,  with  a  part  of  his  gang,  had  burned  the  bridge 
between  Kansas  City  and  Independence,  and  it  was  contem- 
plated by  Major  Banzhaf  to  march  from  Kansas  City,  and  in 
conjunction  with  Colonel  "Weer,  Fourth  Kansas,  to  surround 
and  entrap  Quantrill. 

I  left  camp  about  6 :30  p.  m.  of  the  22nd  inst,  reached  Little 
Santa  Fe  about  10  o'clock  that  night,  and  sent  Major  Pomeroy 
about  3  miles  from  the  town,  with  instructions  to  arrest  one 
David  Tate,  whom  I  had  reason  to  believe  was  connected  with 
Quantrill.  Major  Pomeroy  had  with  him  a  detachment  of  Com- 
panies D  and  E,  under  command  of  Captain  Moore  and  Lieuten- 
ant Stover.  When  Major  Pomeroy  reached  the  house  he 
demanded  entrance,  and  a  gun  was  immediately  fired  through 
the  door.  He  then  called  upon  them  to  surrender,  and  to  send 
out  their  women  and  children  if  they  had  any  in  the  house. 
After  waiting  some  time,  while  shots  were  fired  from  the  house, 
he  ordered  a  volley  to  be  fired  into  the  house.  The  cries  of 
women  were  then  heard,  when  he  ordered  the  men  to  cease  firing. 
The  women  and  children  then  came  out  and  the  firing  was 
resumed  on  both  sides.  Two  of  the  men  then  came  out  of  one  of 
the  windows  and  surrendered.  They  stated  to  Major  Pomeroy 
that  Quantrill  was  in  the  house  with  26  men.  Major  Pomeroy 
then  threatened  to  fire  the  house,  and  upon  their  continued 
refusal  to  surrender  he  ordered  the  house  to  be  fired,  and  an 
attempt  was  made  to  fire  it,  but  without  success.  Major  Pom- 
eroy and  private  Wills  of  Company  D,  were  at  this  time  shot. 
Major  Pomeroy  becoming  disabled,  Captain  Moore  took  com- 
mand, and  sent  back  to  me  requesting  reinforcements  so  as  not 
to  let  any  of  the  men  escape.  Captain  Moore  having  threatened, 
in  case  of  the  enemy  not  surrendering,  to  set  fire  to  the  house 
and  they  still  refusing  to  do  so,  he  ordered  the  house  to  be  again 
set  on  fire,  and  this  time  the  flames  rapidly  enveloped  the  house. 
The  men  in  the  house  who  were  not  wounded  then  burst  out  the 
weatherboarding  at  the  back  of  the  house  and  ran  for  the  tim- 
ber immediately  in  the  rear.  Two  were  shot  down  as  they  ran  - 
1  killed  instantly  and  1  mortally  wounded,  who  died  about  3 


QUANTRILL  OUTLAWED  243 

o'clock  in  the  afternoon.  The  others  escaped,  and  though  the 
woods  were  carefully  scoured,  no  traces  of  them  were  found. 
While  the  firing  was  taking  place  several  men  were  seen  to  fall 
in  the  house,  and  the  prisoners  stated  when  they  were  first  taken 
that  there  were  4  or  5  wounded.  Five  bodies  could  be  distinctly 
seen  in  the  flames  at  the  time  I  reached  the  spot  with  that  part 
of  the  command  which  was  left  behind.  I  caused  all  the  horses 
and  horse  equipments  of  the  enemy  to  be  gathered  together  and 
guarded  and  remained  at  the  house  until  6:30  o'clock  in  the 
morning,  when  I  started  for  the  house  of  one  Wyatt.  As  we 
neared  the  house  6  or  7  men  were  seen  to  break  from  it  into  the 
brush  immediately  adjoining  the  premises.  I  immediately  dis- 
mounted some  of  my  men  and  sent  them  into  the  brush,  but  suc- 
ceeded in  capturing  only  2 

Our  loss  was  as  follows :  Major  Pomeroy,  severely  wounded 
with  a  minnie  ball  in  the  right  thigh  near  the  femoral  artery; 
Private  William  Wills,  of  Company  D,  since  died,  with  a  minnie 
ball  in  the  right  arm  near  the  shoulder,  and  also  with  buck-shot 
in  the  groin  and  abdomen.  We  also  lost  two  horses  in  the  fight. 
The  Jayhawks'  loss  was  5  killed  or  wounded  and  burned  up  in 
the  house,  2  killed  outside,  and  6  prisoners.  We  took  25  horses, 
some  of  which  have  been  already  identified  as  belonging  to  par- 
ties in  this  state,  from  whom  they  were  stolen,  and  about  20  sets 
of  horse  equipments.  The  2  men  killed  outside  the  house  were 
named  Rollen  (brothers) .  The  names  of  those  killed  and  burned 
up  in  the  house  I  am  unable  to  ascertain 

Particular  attention  is  called  to  the  fact  that  Colonel  Mitch- 
ell here  calls  Quantrill  and  his  men  Jayhawks  —  Jayhawkers. 
Of  this  matter  something  will  be  said  at  the  end  of  this  chapter. 

As  against  the  official  report  of  Colonel  Mitchell  the  fanciful 
account  written  by  Major  Edwards  is  here  set  out.  The  exag- 
gerations of  Edwards  in  this  account  are  duplicated  in  every 
account  of  a  battle  he  describes.  His  object  was  to  make  heroes 
of  Quantrill  and  his  men: 

The  house  was  surrounded!  To  the  men  within-side  this 
meant,  unless  they  could  get  out,  death  by  fire  and  sword. 
Quantrell  was  trapped,  he  who  had  been  accorded  the  fox's 
cunning  and  the  panther's  activity.  He  glided  to  the  window 
and  looked  out  cautiously.  The  cold  stars  shone,  and  the  blue 
figures  under  them  and  on  every  hand  seemed  colossal.  The  fist 
of  a  heavy  man  struck  the  door  hard,  and  a  deep  voice  com~ 
manded:  "Make  a  light."  There  had  been  no  firing  as  yet 
save  the  shot  of  the  sentinel  and  its  answering  volley.  Quantrell 


244          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

went  quietly  to  all  who  were  still  asleep  and  bade  them  get  up 
and  get  ready.  It  was  the  moment  when  death  had  to  be  looked 
in  the  face.  Not  a  word  was  spoken.  The  heavy  fist  was  still 
hammering  at  the  door.  Quantrell  crept  to  it  on  tip-toe,  listened 
a  second  at  the  sounds  outside,  and  fired.  "  Oh ! "  and  a  stalwart 
Federal  fell  prone  across  the  porch,  dying.  "You  asked  for  a 

light,   and  you've  got  it,  d n  you,"  Quantrell  ejeculated, 

cooler  than  his  pistol  barrel.  Afterwards  there  was  no  more 
bravado.  "Bar  the  doors  and  barricade  the  windows!"  he 
shouted ;  ' '  quick,  men ! ' '  Beds  were  freely  used  and  applicable 
furniture.  Little  and  Shepherd  stood  by  one  door;  Jarrette, 
Younger,  Toler,  and  Hoy  barricaded  the  other  and  made  the 
windows  bullet-proof.  Outside  the  Federal  fusilade  was  inces- 
sant. Mistaking  Tate's  house  for  a  frame  house  when  it  was 
built  of  brick,  the  commander  of  the  enemy  could  be  heard  en- 
couraging his  men  to  shoot  low  and  riddle  the  dwelling.  Pres- 
ently there  was  a  lull.  Neither  party  fired  for  the  space  of  sev- 
eral minutes,  and  Quantrell  spoke  to  his  people:  "Boys,  we 
are  in  a  tight  place.  We  can't  stay  here,  and  I  do  not  mean  to 
surrender.  All  who  want  to  follow  me  out  can  say  so;  all  who 
prefer  to  give  up  without  a  rush  can  also  say  so.  I  will  do  the 
best  I  can  for  them."  Four  concluded  to  appeal  to  the  Federals 
for  protection;  seventeen  to  follow  Quantrell  to  the  death.  He 
called  a  parley  and  informed  the  Federal  commander  that  four 
of  his  followers  wanted  to  surrender.  "Let  them  come  out," 
was  the  order.  Out  they  went  and  the  fight  began  again.  Too 
eager  to  see  what  manner  of  men  their  prisoners  were,  the  Fed- 
erals holding  the  west  front  of  the  house  huddled  about  them 
eagerly.  Ten  guerillas  from  the  upper  story  fired  at  the  crowd 
and  brought  down  six.  A  roar  followed  this,  and  a  rush  back 
again  to  cover  at  the  double  quick.  It  was  hot  work  now.  Quan- 
trell, supported  by  James  Little,  Cole  Younger,  Hoy,  and 
Stephen  Shores,  held  the  upper  story,  while  Jarrette,  Toler, 
George  Shepherd,  and  others  held  the  lower.  Every  shot  told. 
The  proprietor  of  the  house,  Major  Tate,  was  a  Southern  hero, 
grey-headed  but  Roman.  He  went  about  laughing.  "Help  me 
to  get  my  family  but,  boys,"  he  said,  "and  I  will  help  you  to 
hold  the  house.  It's  as  good  a  time  for  me  to  die,  I  reckon,  as 
any  other,  if  so  be  that  God  wills  it.  But  the  old  woman  is  only 
a  woman."  Another  parley.  Would  the  Federal  commander 
let  the  women  and  children  out?  Yes,  gladly,  and  the  old  man, 
too.  There  was  eagerness  for  this,  and  much  of  veritable  cun- 
ning. The  family  occupied  an  ell  of  the  mansion  with  which 
there  was  no  communication  from  the  main  building  where 
Quantrell  and  his  men  were  save  by  way  of  a  door  which  opened 
upon  a  porch,  and  this  porch  was  under  the  concentrated  fire 


QUANTRILL  OUTLAWED  245 

of  the  assailants.  After  the  family  moved  out  the  attacking 
party  would  throw  skirmishers  in,  and  then  —  the  torch.  Quan- 
trell  understood  it  in  a  moment,  and  spoke  up  to  the  father  of 
the  family:  "Go  out,  Major.  It  is  your  duty  to  be  with  your 
wife  and  children."  The  old  man  went,  protesting.  Perhaps 
for  forty  years  the  blood  had  not  coursed  so  pleasantly  and  so 
rapidly  through  his  veins.  Giving  ample  time  for  the  family  to 
get  safely  beyond  the  range  of  fire  of  the  besieged,  Quantrell 
went  back  to  his  post  and  looked  out.  He  saw  two  Federals 
standing  together  beyond  revolver  range.  "Is  there  a  shot-gun 
here?"  he  asked.  Cole  Younger  brought  him  one  loaded  with 
buck-shot.  Thrusting  half  his  body  out  the  nearest  window, 
and  receiving  as  many  volleys  as  there  were  sentinels,  he  fired 
the  two  barrels  of  his  gun  so  near  together  that  they  sounded 
as  one  barrel.  Both  Federals  fell,  one  dead,  the  other  mortally 
wounded.  There  followed  this  daring  and  conspicuous  feat  a 
yell  so  piercing  and  exultant  that  even  the  horses,  hitched  in  the 
timber  fifty  yards  away,  reared  in  their  fright  and  snorted  with 
terror.  Black  columns  of  smoke  blew  past  the  windows  where 
the  Guerillas  were,  and  a  bright  red  flame  leaped  up  toward  the 
sky  on  the  wings  of  the  wind.  The  ell  of  the  house  had  been 
fired,  and  was  burning  fiercely.  Quantrell 's  face  —  just  a  little 
paler  than  usual  —  had  a  set  look  that  was  not  good  to  see. 
The  tiger  was  at  bay.  Many  of  the  men 's  revolvers  were  empty, 
and  in  order  to  gain  time  to  load  them,  another  parley  was  had. 
The  talk  was  of  surrender.  The  Federal  commander  demanded 
immediate  submission,  and  Shepherd,  with  a  voice  heard  above 
the  rage  and  roar  of  the  flames,  pleaded  for  twenty  minutes. 
No.  Ten?  No.  Five?  No.  Then  the  commander  cried  out  in 
a  voice  not  a  whit  inferior  to  Shepherd's  in  compass:  "You 
have  one  minute.  If,  at  its  expiration,  you  have  not  surrendered, 
not  a  single  man  of  you  shall  escape  alive."  "Thank  you," 
said  Cole  Younger,  sotto  voce,  "catching  comes  before  hanging." 

"Count  sixty  then,  and  be  d d  to  you,"  Shepherd  shouted 

as  a  parting  volley,  and  then  a  strange  silence  fell  upon  these 
desperate  men  face  to  face  with  imminent  death.  When  every 
man  was  ready,  Quantrell  said  briefly:  "Shot-guns  to  the  front." 
Six,  loaded  heavily  with  buck-shot,  were  borne  there,  and  he  put 
himself  at  the  head  of  the  six  who  carried  them.  Behind  these 
were  those  having  only  revolvers.  In  single  file,  the  charging 
column  was  formed  in  the  main  room  of  the  building.  The  glare 
of  the  burning  ell  lit  it  up  as  though  the  sun  was  shining  there. 
Some  tightened  their  pistol  belts.  One  fell  upon  his  knees  and 
prayed.  Nobody  scoffed  at  him,  for  God  was  in  that  room.  He 
is  everywhere  when  heroes  confess.  There  were  seventeen  who 
were  about  to  receive  the  fire  of  three  hundred. 


246          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Ready !  Quantrell  flung  the  door  wide  open  and  leaped  out. 
The  shot-gun  men  —  Jarrette,  Younger,  Shepherd,  Toler,  Little 
and  Hoy  were  hard  behind  him.  Right  and  left  from  the  thin 
short  column  a  fierce  fire  beat  into  the  very  faces  of  the  Federals, 
who  recoiled  in  some  confusion,  shooting,  however,  from  every 
side.  There  was  a  yell  and  a  grand  rush,  and  when  the  end  had 
come  and  all  the  fixed  realities  figured  up,  the  enemy  had 
eighteen  killed,  twenty-nine  badly  wounded,  and  five  prisoners, 
and  the  captured  horses  of  the  Guerillas.  Not  a  man  of  Quan- 
trell 's  command  was  touched. 

Thus  it  always  is  in  the  work  of  Major  Edwards.  Quan- 
trill  escapes  without  loss,  or  with  an  insignificant  loss,  when  he 
retreats.  And  he  always  inflicts  immense  loss  on  the  Union 
soldiers.  Here  he  is  credited  with  having  killed  eighteen  and 
wounded  twenty-nine.  The  truth  is,  as  shown  by  the  official 
report,  that  the  Union  loss  was  two  wounded,  one  of  whom  died. 
At  the  Big  Blue  bridge  Quantrill  shot  down  thirteen  Union  sol- 
diers, according  to  Edwards.  But,  as  we  have  seen,  he  shot  but 
a  sergeant  and  a  citizen,  and  the  authority  for  that  statement  is 
the  Gregg  Manuscript,  written  by  one  of  Quantrill's  men  who 
was  present,  and  who  is  known  to  be  truthful  and  reliable.  And, 
according  to  Edwards,  every  skirmish  and  battle  fought  by 
Quantrill  resulted  in  a  victory  for  him,  though  he  records  it  often 
that  he  had  to  run  for  it,  and  frequently  had  to  scatter  his  men 
to  avoid  destruction.  The  average  reader  wonders  why  it  was- 
necessary  to  flee  for  life  and  scatter  like  birds  after  a  victory 
had  been  won.  According  to  Edwards,  Quantrill  and  his  men 
must  have  killed  several  thousand  Union  soldiers  during  the  war. 
The  truth  is,  that  the  number  of  soldiers  killed  by  Quantrill 
and  his  men  was  insignificant,  and  those  killed  were  mainly  shot 
from  ambush. 

The  work  of  Major  Edwards  is  the  standard  authority  on 
Quantrill  and  his  men,  and  this  is  why  it  is  necessary  often  to- 
call  attention  to  its  exaggerations. 

JAYHAWKERS 

In  going  through  the  Rebellion  Records  the  author  finds 
that  the  name  "Jayhawkers"  was  applied  indiscriminately  to- 
irregular  bands  on  both  sides  in  Kansas  and  Missouri  and  to  both 


QUANTRILL  OUTLAWED  247 

Kansans  and  Missourians.  It  did  not,  during  the  war,  certainly 
not  in  the  first  years  of  the  war,  have  any  more  application  to 
Kansas  people  than  to  any  other  people. 

When  and  how  the  name  ' '  Jayhawkers "  came  to  be  applied 
to  Kansans  in  their  forays  for  depredation  does  not  appear. 
And  how  the  Kansas  people  came  to  be  generally  called  Jay- 
hawkers  has  so  far  not  had  any  satisfactory  explanation.  The 
Pat  Devlin  fiction  perpetrated  in  Andreas 's  History  of  Kansas 
was  never  worth  any  serious  consideration.  Even  the  origin  of 
the  word  "jayhawker"  has  not  .been  satisfactorily  traced.  It 
is  known  that  some  Forty-niners  who  survived  the  terrible  or- 
deal of  crossing  Death  Valley  called  themselves  Jayhawkers,  but 
they  themselves  did  not  know  why.  One  of  them  claims  that 
the  word  originated  with  them,  but  his  explanation  of  its  origin 
is  as  ridiculous  as  that  given  by  Pat  Devlin.  And  the  other 
members  of  the  company  made  no  such  claim,  and  intimate  that 
the  name  was  in  use  long  before  the  party  reached  the  Platte, 
where  the  member  of  the  party  who  claims  it  originated  with 
them  says  it  was  "coined."  The  word  did  not  originate  with 
this  party  —  that  is  certain. 

It  has  been  said  to  have  originated  in  the  patriot  army  of 
Texas  fighting  for  the  Independence  of  the  Lone  Star  State 
against  Mexico,  under  General  Houston. 


CHAPTER  XVIII 

QUANTRILL,THE  GUERRILLA  CHIEF  —  PINK  HELL  —  THE  CLARK  FARM 
—  AT  THE  SNI  FORD  —  THE  LOWE  HOUSE 

FROM  the  Tate  house  Quantrill  made  his  way  on  foot  to 
the  house  of  David  Wilson,  on  the  head  waters  of  the 
Little  Blue.  He  was  almost  exhausted  when  he  arrived 
there.  He  waited  at  Wilson's  for  the  gathering  of  his  men,  for  he 
had  sent  couriers  to  notify  those  at  the  Wyatt  homestead  and 
other  places  that  the  rendezvous  had  been  fixed  on  the  head  waters 
of  the  Little  Blue.  Quantrill,  however,  did  not  remain  at  the 
house  of  Wilson  until  all  his  men  arrived,  fearing  the  Union 
forces.  In  two  or  three  days  he  moved  to  the  house  of  John  Flan- 
nery,  where  he  remained  until  Hallar  and  his  other  followers  came 
in.  When  all  had  assembled  he  gave. them  directions  for  again 
coming  together  and  then  disbanded  his  men  long  enough  to  allow 
those  who  had  lost  their  horses  to  secure  new  mounts.  All  were 
to  report  within  a  few  days  at  a  designated  point  on  the  Sni. 
By  the  last  of  March  the  command  had  reassembled,  and  the 
men  were  eager  to  be  on  the  trail. 

Quantrill  soon  made  his  camp  at  the  farm  of  Samuel  C. 
Clark,  near  Pink  Hill,  which  is  about  nineteen  miles  southwest 
from  Independence.  Here  he  was  attacked  on  Sunday,  the  30th 
of  March,  1862,  by  Captain  Albert  P.  Peabody,  commanding 
Company  D,  First  Missouri  Cavalry.  Captain  Peabody  was  in 
command  of  a  detachment  of  sixty-five  men,  and  he  was  search- 
ing for  Quantrill,  having  heard  that  he  was  at  Pink  Hill.  When 
nearing  that  point  he  had  divided  his  force,  placing  thirty-five 
men  under  command  of  Lieutenant  White  of  Company  C,  and 
retaining  thirty  men  commanded  by  Second  Lieutenant  Gurnee, 
of  Company  D.  With  these  two  detachments  he  began  to  scour 
the  country  for  the  purpose  of  routing  Quantrill  from  his  hiding- 
place.  Captain  Peabody  discovered  his  camp  at  the  Clark  farm 
and  charged  upon  it.  Quantrill  was  taken  by  surprise.  Koger 
had  just  arrived  from  a  visit  to  an  acquaintance  in  the  neighbor- 


QUANTRILL  THE  GUERRILLA  CHIEF          249 

hood,  and  was  hitching  his  horse  to  the  rail  fence  in  front  of  the 
house  when  the  firing  commenced;  he  was  slightly  wounded  by 
the  first  shot  fired.  Gregg  was  acting  barber,  cutting  a  com- 
rade's hair  in  the  front  yard.  All  the  guerrillas  got  to  cover  at 
once  and  made  preparations  for  a  bold  stand. 

Quantrill  had  with  him  about  thirty  men,  though  the  official 
reports  credit  him  with  twice  that  number  at  the  beginning  of 
the  fight  and  say  that  he  received  reinforcements  from  neighbor- 
ing farmers  and  at  the  conclusion  had  one  hundred  and  fifty 
men,  a  thing  not  at  all  probable.  The  battle  was  fought  between 
the  sixty-five  Federals  and  about  half  that  number  of  guerrillas. 

Quantrill^  with  eight  men,  fought  from  the  lower  story  of  the 
Clark  dwelling,  and  Todd,  with  eight  men,  fought  from  the 
upper  story.  Gregg,  with  eight  men,  fought  from  the  negro 
cabins.  The  dwelling  and  negro  cabins  were  built  of  logs,  from 
between  which  the  chinking  was  knocked  to  make  port  holes 
through  which  to  fire.  Quantrill 's  horses  were  in  the  barn 
about  two  hundred  feet  from  the  dwelling. 

Captain  Peabody  sent  a  courier  to  bring  up  Lieutenant 
White,  and  as  soon  as  the  detachment  arrived  he  charged  the 
dwelling.  This  charge  convinced  Quantrill  that  he  could  not 
hold  the  premises;  perhaps  he  had  no  intention  of  doing  so 
longer  than  was  necessary  to  secure  his  horses,  from  which  he 
was  cut  off.  The  charge  caused  him  to  determine  to  escape  at 
once.  He  divided  his  men  equally  between  himself  and  Todd 
and  left  Todd  to  hold  the  house.  He  started  to  the  barn,  but  had 
not  reached  it  when  Captain  Peabody  came  down  in  another 
charge.  This  scared  Todd,  and  he  called  loudly  for  Quantrill 
to  return,  which  he  did.  Peabody  was  now  closing  in  upon  the 
guerrillas,  and  Quantrill  ordered  his  men  to  follow  him 
from  the  house,  and  the  whole  band  fled  to  the  rough  timber- 
land  at  the  back  of  the  house,  losing  all  their  horses. 

The  official  reports '  state  the  losses  as  follows :  Union, 
three  wounded  —  two  slightly,  one  severely;  killed,  none;  three 

i  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  VIII,  p.  358.  Report  of  Major 
Charles  Banzhaf,  First  Missouri  Cavalry,  to  Maj.-Gen.  H.  W.  Halleck,  Com- 
manding Department  of  the  Mississippi.  Dated,  Kansas  City,  Mo.,  April 
5,  1862. 


250          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

horses  shot  dead.  Guerrillas,  six  killed;  wounded  carried  away 
and  nothing  known  of  the  number;  twenty  horses  and  equip- 
ments. As  usual,  Edwards  has  a  large  number  of  Union  soldiers 
killed  —  twenty-seven  at  one  volley,  as  well  as  their  horses. 

It  is  doubtful  whether  the  guerrillas  had  any  killed  or 
wounded.  The  Gregg  Manuscript  says  the  slight  wound  sus- 
tained by  Koger  was  their  only  damage,  except  the  loss  of  the 
horses. 

Captain  Peabody  had  sent  to  Pink  Hill  for  reinforcements, 
and  these  were  promptly  started  —  fifty-one  men  under  Captain 
Murphy.  In  his  retreat  Quantrill  went  to  the  Sni  ford  by  which 
these  reinforcements  would  have  to  cross  to  reach  the  Clark 
homestead.  He  took  a  position  on  a  high  bluff  with  a  steep  face 
which  commanded  the  ford.  Captain  Murphy  found  Quantrill 
there  and  attacked  him,  though  at  much  disadvantage.  The 
guerrillas  poured  in  a  vigorous  fire  until  Captain  Peabody,  hav- 
ing now  burned  all  the  buildings  at  the  Clark  homestead  and 
started  to  follow,  came  up  on  their  trail  and  struck  their  rear. 
Then  they  retired.  Losses  in  this  engagement,  as  stated  in  the 
official  reports,2  were  as  follows :  Union ;  two  wounded,  one  mor- 
tally ;  two  horses  killed.  Guerrillas ;  five  killed,  six  wounded,  and 
one  taken  prisoner.  As  Captain  Kaiser  could  have  no  means  of 
ascertaining  the  number  of  guerrillas  wounded,  the  accuracy  of 
his  statement  of  the  losses  of  Quantrill  is  open  to  question.^ 

The  guerrillas  were  again  dismounted,  and  a  period  of  in- 
activity lasting  a  few  days  was  necessary  in  order  to  secure 
horses  for  the  men.  The  rendezvous  was  at  the  house  of  Reuben 
Harris,  ten  miles  south  of  Independence.  There  Quantrill 

*  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  VIII,  p.  360.  Eeport  of  Captain 
John  B.  Kaiser,  Boonville  Battalion,  Missouri  Cavalry  (Militia),  to  Col. 
John  D.  Stevenson.  Dated,  Pink  Hill,  Mo.,  April  1,  1862. 

3  Brig.-Gen.  James  Totten,  U.  S.  Army,  made  a  report  of  this  affair, 
which  can  be  found  in  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  VIII,  p.  359,  in 

which  he  uses  the  following:  " of  a  skirmish  which  took  place 

between  his  command  and  some  bands  of  Quantrill 's  and  Parker's  Jay- 
hawkers.  ' ' 

Captain  Kaiser,  in  the  report  cited  above,  uses  the  term  —  "Parker's 
and  Quantrill 's  Jayhawkers." 

These  instances  are  here  mentioned  to  illustrate  further  what  the 
author  said  on  the  subject  of  "Jayhawkers,"  ante. 


QUANTRILL  THE  GUERRILLA  CHIEF          251 

planned  to  capture  Harrisonville,  county-seat  of  Cass  county, 
and  to  this  end  moved  to  the  house  of  Job  Crabtree,  eight  miles 
east  of  Independence,  on  the  Little  Blue.  The  report  of  the 
activity  of  Captain  Peabody  caused  Quantrill  to  abandon  his 
design  to  capture  Harrisonville,  and  he  moved  from  Crabtree 's 
to  an  abandoned  house,  known  as  the  Jordan  Lowe  house,  twelve 
miles  southwest  from  Independence,  and  not  far  from  Little 
Santa  Fe.  He  and  his  men  slept  in  the  timber  near  the  house. 

The  Union  troops  were  actively  looking  for  Quantrill.  Lieut- 
Col.  Brown,  of  the  Seventh  Missouri  Cavalry,  had  been  trailing 
him  for  five  days.  Having  arranged  with  a  scout  to  be  at  Ray 
Point  (Jackson  county)  at  midnight  of  the  15th  of  April,  1862, 
with  definite  information  as  to  Quantrill 's  camp,  he  sent  a  de- 
tachment of  thirty  men  of  the  First  Missouri  Cavalry,  command- 
ed by  Lieutenant  G.  W.  Nash,  to  capture  him.  The  scout  was 
successful,  and  he  met  Lieutenant  Nash  at  Ray  Point  with  the 
desired  information.  The  night  was  very  dark.  A  heavy  thun- 
derstorm raged  until  four  o'clock,  A.  M.,  of  the  16th,  and  rain 
fell  in  torrents,  the  darkness  and  rain  completely  concealing 
the  movements  of  Nash's  force.  The  heavy  rain  drove  Quantrill 
and  his  men  from  the  timber  to  the  house.  They  posted  no 
guard,  supposing  that  no  troops  would  be  out  in  such  a  night. 
The  door  was  barred,  and  the  men  went  to  sleep,  some  of  them 
in  the  loft.  Their  horses  were  hitched  to  the  fence  at  the  rear 
of  the  house. 

Just  at  dawn  and  while  the  men  were  yet  asleep,  Lieutenant 
Nash  arrived  at  the  Lowe  house  and  quiet- 
ly secured  the  horses  of  the  guerrillas. 
He  then  threw  his  men  about  the  house 
and  opened  fire.  The  surprise  was  com- 
plete. But  Quantrill  had  no  thought  of 
surrendering.  He  determined  to  escape 
from  the  house  at  once  and  called  on  all 
the  men  to  follow  him.  Todd,  Blunt,  and 
Gilchrist  were  firing  from  the  loft  and  did 
not  hear  the  order  to  abandon  the  house.  |^  JJP 

When  the  guerrillas  had  almost  reached 
the   timber   Cole   Younger   noticed   that  Dick 


252          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Todd  was  still  firing  from  the  loft,  and  he  returned  to  bring  him 
off.  He  succeeded  in  getting  Todd  away,  but  the  others  were 
captured.  A  new  recruit,  an  Irish  boy,  was  killed,  as  was  Wil- 
liam Carr.  Gilchrist  was  killed,  and  Blunt  was  wounded.4 

It  has  always  been  represented  by  the  Missouri  biographers 
of  Quantrill  that  he  was  engaged  in  protecting  the  Southern 
sympathizers  and  was  engaged  in  a  righteous  and  holy  defensive 
warfare  in  Missouri  against  invading  hordes  from  Kansas,  mo- 
lesting no  man  not  in  arms,  conducting  his  irregular  warfare 
in  great  simplicity  and  good  faith,  with  the  good  of  the  people 
at  heart  —  a  sort  of  Francis  Marion  —  a  patriot  of  pure  char- 
acter, the  champion  of  innocent  and  helpless  people,  never  doing 
anything  wrong. 

In  the  official  report  of  Captain  John  B.  Kaiser,  before  cited, 
it  is  said : 

The  Union  people  here  are  suffering  greatly  from  the  bands 
of  these  ruffians.  They  are  daily  driven  from  their  homes  and 
many  of  them  are  caught  and  either  hung  or  shot.  No  Union 
man  is  safe  one  mile  from  camp  unless  a  force  is  with  him. 
Parker's  and  QuantrilPs  bands  now  number  nearly  two  hundred 
men,  as  nearly  as  I  can  learn.  The  peaceable  citizens  are  very 
anxious  that  I  remain. 

And  attention  is  called  to  the  fact  that  the  official  reports 
make  it  plain  that  it  was  not  the  Kansas  troops  that  were  sta- 
tioned along  the  border,  but  in  almost  every  instance  these  troops 
were  Missourians  who  had  enlisted  in  the  Union  army.  So  far, 
it  does  not  appear  that  any  Kansas  troops  were  in  any  battle 
with  Quantrill  and  his  men.  Nor  does  it  appear  that  they  were 
stationed  in  Jackson  county.  And  these  reports  show  that 
Quantrill  had  to  contend  with  Missouri  troops,  was  chased  and 

4  The  official  report  of  this  affair  is  found  in  Rebellion  Eecords, 
Series  I,  Vol.  XIII,  p.  58.  Eeport  of  E.  B.  Brown,  Lieutenant-Colonel,  Com- 
manding Seventh  Missouri  Infantry,  to  Captain  Lucien  J.  Barnes,  A.  A. 
Gen.,  Jefferson  City.  Dated,  Independence,  Mo.,  April  16,  1862.  This 
report  fixes  the  loss  of  the  guerrillas  at  four  killed,  four  wounded,  and 
five  prisoners,  horses,  clothing,  and  other  property.  The  Gregg  Manuscript 
says  Gilchrist  was  killed  and  Blunt  wounded  after  they  were  captured. 
It  makes  no  mention  of  the  Irish  boy  nor  of  William  Carr.  No  loss 
reported  by  the  Union  troops. 


QUANTRILL  THE  GUERRILLA  CHIEF  253 

attacked  by  Union  troops  from  Missouri  and  not  from  Kansas. 
And  all  this  confirms  the  position  taken  in  a  former  chapter  — 
that  the  Missouri  people  were  hopelessly  divided  in  the  war,  and 
that  most  of  the  outrages  committed  in  that  State  were  commit- 
ted by  Missourians  upon  Missourians.  There  can  be  no  doubt 
that  troops  enlisted  in  other  States  committed  crimes  in  Missouri, 
and  that  some  of  the  worst  of  these  crimes  were  committed  by 
Kansas  troops  under  Jennison.  But  these  things  were  not 
countenanced  by  the  Kansas  people  any  more  than  were  the  acts 
of  Quantrill  by  the  Missouri  people;  and  Jennison  was  discred- 
ited and  resigned. 

Official  reports  usually  show  a  very  different  state  of  af- 
fairs from  rumors  and  general  talk  and  gossip. 


IT  IS  probable  that  in  May,  1862,  QuantrilTs  ammunition  was 
exhausted  and  that  he  was  unable  to  procure  a  supply.  He 
had  usually  been  successful  in  having  the  women  of  Jackson 
county  who  sympathized  with  him  get  pistol  caps,  lead  and 
powder  from  Kansas  City.  This  resource  had  now  failed  him. 
His  operations  could  not  go  on  without  ammunition,  and  as  all 
his  efforts  to  replenish  his  store  had  failed,  he  determined  to  go 
himself  and  procure  a  supply.  Two  plug  horses  were  provided. 
On  these  Quantrill  and  Todd  rode  to  Hannibal,  Missouri.  There 
they  sold  the  horses.  In  three  or  four  days  they  succeeded  in 
buying  about  fifty  thousand  pistol-caps  without  arousing  the 
suspicions  of  the  military  authorities  there.  They  returned  by 
the  way  of  St.  Joseph,  going  to  that  point  by  rail.  From  St. 
Joseph  they  returned  to  their  haunts,  riding  from  Platte  City 
to  Harlem,  Clay  county,  in  a  hack  or  closed  carriage.  There  a 
sentinel  challenged  the  driver,  and  while  he  was  questioning  the 
gentleman  of  the  reins  and  whip,  Todd  and  Quantrill  escaped 
from  the  conveyance  by  the  door  on  the  side  from  the  sentinel. 
They  went  down  the  north  bank  of  the  Missouri  River  seeking 
means  to  cross.  Fortunately  they  came  upon  Andrew  Blunt 
and  William  Bledsoe,  who  were  fishing  from  a  skiff  —  "jugging 
for  catfish  in  the  shutes  of  the  Missouri."  The  meeting  was  a 
surprise  to  both  parties,  for  the  guerrillas  did  not  know  where 
their  chief  had  gone,  and  Quantrill  did  not  expect  to  find  any 
of  his  men  so  near  to  Kansas  City.1 

Quantrill  was  active  in  a  small  way,  only,  during  the  month 

i  The  hairbreadth  escapes  and  thrilling  adventures  of  Quantrill  and 
Todd  in  Federal  camps,  dressed  in  the  uniforms  of  Federal  officers,  an 
set  forth  by  Major  Edwards,  are  all  pure  fiction,  so  far  as  the  author  has 
been  able  to  learn.  Careful  research  fails  to  find  any  verification  of  the 
account.  Edwards  has  them  remain  three  days  in  St.  Joseph,  at  the  head- 
quarters of  the  Union  troops,  pretending  to  be  majors  in  the  army. 


QUANTRILL  IN  THE  SUMMER  OF  1862          255 

of  June,  1862.  He  seems  to  have  remained  away  from  the  vicin- 
ity of  Independence,  and  to  have  avoided  the  Union  troops.  Only 
occasional  glimpses  are  caught  of  him  in  the  official  reports,  and 
indirect  mention  of  his  presence  here  and  there.  He  was  evi- 
dently riding  industriously  and  undoubtedly  harrassing  Union 
citizens,  no  doubt  hanging,  shooting,  and  robbing  them  fre- 
quently. But  the  war  was  growing  in  volume  and  intensity, 
and  many  minor  matters  escaped  notice.2 

The  return  of  Colonel  Upton  S.  Hays  to  Jackson  county 
for  the  purpose  of  recruiting  a  regiment  for  the  Confederacy 
was  the  beginning  of  a  season  of  activity  for  Quantrill  and  his 
men.  He  arrived  about  the  middle  of  June  and  immediately 
sought  Quantrill  and  requested  his  assistance.  Quantrill  agreed 
to  help.  They  planned  to  change  the  field  of  operations  to  some 
point  away  from  Jackson  county,  hoping  to  lead  the  Union  troops 
a  fruitless  chase;  and  when  the  country  was  clear  Hays  would 
return  and  enlist  his  men  without  molestation.  With  this  end 
in  view  they  led  the  guerrilla  bands  to  the  south  some  eighty 
miles,  to  the  north  part  of  Henry  county.  They  camped  on 
Walnut  creek  in  a  vacant  farm-house,  where  they  were  attacked 
the  following  morning,  wounding  and  capturing  one  of  the 
Union  men. 

When  it  was  certain  that  the  Union  forces  knew  of  the  ap- 
pearance of  the  guerrillas  to  the  south,  and  their  absence  from 
their  usual  haunts,  Hays  became  impatient  to  begin  his  recruit- 
ing. He  asked  Quantrill  for  a  body-guard  with  which  to  return 
to  Jackson  county.  Quantrill  gave  him  Todd  and  thirty  men. 
Hays  departed  early  in  July,  leaving  Quantrill  with  sixty-five 
men.  Even  then  the  Union  forces  were  closing  in  on  Quantrill. 
Major  James  0.  Gower,  First  Iowa  Cavalry,  heard  of  him  on 
the  8th  on  Sugar  creek,  near  Wadesburg,  Cass  county,  and  sent 
out  Lieutenant  Reynolds,  Company  A,  First  Iowa,  with  ninety 
men  to  search  for  him.  This  detachment  then  returned  to 
Clinton. 

2  'Rebellion  Eecords,  Series  I,  Vol.  XIII,  pp.  120,  131,  132,  156,  157, 
mention  Quantrill  at  this  period.  He  was  in  the  vicinity  of  Pink  Hill,  in 
the  edges  of  Cass  and  Johnson  counties,  and  perhaps  he  hovered  sometimes 
along  the  State-line. 


256          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Major  Gower  sent  dispatches  to  Butler  and  Warrensburg 
directing  details  of  men  to  meet  him  at  the  Lotspiech  farm,  Cass 
county.  At  five  A.  M.,  on  the  10th,  Major  Gower  marched  for 
the  rendezvous  with  seventy-five  men,  arriving  at  eleven  o'clock, 
where  he  found  Captain  William  H.  Ankey  with  sixty-five  of  the 
First  Iowa,  and  Captain  William  A.  Martin  with  sixty-five  men 
of  the  Seventh  Missouri.  Shortly  afterward  sixty  men  of  the 
First  Missouri  Cavalry  under  Captain  M.  Kehoe  and  Lieutenant 
White,  came  up,  making  a  total  force  of  two  hundred  and  sixty- 
five  men. 

Quantrill's  trail  was  struck  at  Lincoln  Ford  on  Big  creek 
by  Captain  Kehoe,  he  having  left  his  camp  on  Sugar  creek  at 
four  o'clock  P.  M.,  of  the  9th.  The  trail  was  followed  east  of 
Rose  Hill,  Johnson  county,  then  up  Big  creek  to  the  Hornsby 
farm,  where  the  guerrillas  had  taken  dinner.  Having  marched 
his  men  fifty  miles,  Major  Gower  camped  there,  and  it  was 
agreed  that  all  should  start  the  next  morning,  Friday  the  llth, 
at  daybreak. 

At  the  appointed  time  Captain  Kehoe 's  command  was  in 
the  saddle,  and  notice  was  sent  to  Major  Gower  that  it  was  ready 
to  move.  Not  receiving  a  response,  and  supposing  that  the  Iowa 
troops  would  follow  immediately,  Captain  Kehoe  marched  slowly 
in  the  direction  of  the  guerrilla  camp.  About  four  miles  west 
of  Pleasant  Hill  he  encountered  Quantrill's  pickets,  and  he  at 
once  sent  word  to  Major  Gower  that  he  was  about  to  engage  the 
enemy,  and  calling  for  reinforcements.  Half  a  mile  beyond  the 
picket  station  Captain  Kehoe  found  Quantrill's  command  at  the 
house  of  one  Sears  (Searancy?),  a  Union  man,  making  prepara- 
tions to  burn  the  house.  He  charged  the  enemy,  supposing  it  to 
be  a  part  of  the  body,  but  finding  it  to  be  the  main  command. 

There  had  been  a  heavy  rain  toward  night  the  day  before, 
and  the  guerrillas  were  thoroughly  soaked.  The  morning  was 
bright  and  warm.  They  had  hung  their  blankets  and  other  ef- 
fects on  the  fences  to  dry.  When  the  pickets  were  fired  on 
Quantrill  called  the  usual  command  —  " Saddle  up."  The  horses 
were  at  once  equipped  and  hitched  in  a  ravine  back  of  the  horse- 
lot.  The  men  were  ordered  to  the  front  and  concealed  behind 
the  lot  fence  and  ordered  not  to  fire  before  the  word  was  given. 


QUANTRILL  IN  THE  SUMMER  OF  1862 


257 


Six  of  Captain  Kehoe's  men  charged  down  upon  this  position. 
"When  they  were  within  thirty  yards  of  the  gate  Quantrill  or- 
dered his  men  to  fire,  and  the  six  Union  soldiers  fell  from  their 
saddles  dead,  and  nine  of  those  following  were  wounded.  Quan- 
trill opened  the  gate  to  the  lot  at  the  suggestion  of  Gregg,  and 
the  horses  of  the  dead  Federals  came  in  at  full  speed.  The  arms 
of  the  dead  men  were  secured,  and  the  guerrillas  again  concealed 
themselves,  but  no  further  charges  were  made.  Some  additional 
troops  had  joined  Captain  Kehoe,  and  fire  was  opened  on  the 
enemy  at  long  range,  killing  John  Hampton  and  wounding 
George  Mattox  and  William  Tucker.  Quantrill  charged  the 
Union  troops,  killing  two.  After  sending 
away  his  wounded  he  led  his  men  to  a 
ravine  half  a  mile  away  surrounded  with 
dense  thickets  of  rough  brush.  The  banks 
of  the  ravine  were  from  five  to  seven 
feet  high  and  from  thirty  to  sixty  feet 
apart.  Captain  Martin  was  the  first  to 
attack  Quantrill  at  this  ravine.  He  dis- 
mounted his  men  and  began  a  charge 
when  twenty  of  them  were  in  line.  Their 
fire  was  reserved  until  the  brink  of  the 
ravine  was  reached.  After  delivering  his 
fire  he  threw  his  men  forward  into  the 
defile  among  the  guerrillas,  who  charge 
that  this  was  recklessness  caused  by  the  men  being  drunk.  A 
hand-to-hand  struggle,  bloody  and  terrible,  ensued.  It  was  again 
Missourian  against  Missourian.  ^The  guerrillas  were  driven 
from  the  ravine  and  forced  to  the  opposite  side  of  the  thicket. 
Major  Gower  had,  however,  sent  a  force  to  that  side  of  the 
timber,  and  Quantrill  and  his  men  ran  at  full  head  against  it. 
A  fierce  volley  and  charge  drove  them  back  through  the  weaker 
line  of  Captain  Martin,  who  followed  them  back  to  the  ravine 
and  again  renewed  the  hand-to-hand  grapple,  and  the  guerrillas 
were  again  forced  out.  They  took  a  position  in  another  branch 
of  the  defile  in  the  same  thicket.  Here  they  were  again  attacked 
by  Captain  Martin,  who  had  received  some  reinforcements,  and 
the  struggle  was  renewed.  The  guerrillas  held  their  ground  well, 

17 


Lee  McMurtry 


258          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

and  Captain  Martin  charged  them  several  times.  Quantrill  was 
wounded  in  the  thigh.  His  men  were  without  ammunition  and 
had  resorted  to  throwing  stones,  and  he  saw  that  he  should  be 
unable  to  remain  longer  in  the  ravine.  Many  of  his  men  were 
dismounted.  He  ordered  those  having  horses  to  mount  and  try 
to  escape,  and  Gregg  led  them  out  —  twenty-one  men.  Quantrill 
led  out  the  dismounted  men,  taking  a  direction  opposite  to  that 
by  which  the  horsemen  departed,  but  still  remaining  in  the 
timber  on  the  rough  ground. 

This  battle  raged  an  hour  and  a  half  and  was  the 
hardest  yet  fought  with  the  guerrillas  —  one  of  the  hardest  ever 
fought  with  them.  The  heavy  foliage  of  the  brush  made  it  im- 
possible to  see  ten  feet  in  any  direction  there.  The  cries  of  the 
men,  the  sharp  and  steady  cracking  of  carbine  and  revolver, 
the  flash  of  the  fire  in  the  dark  woods,  the  fierce  grapple  when 
sabre-stroke  was  parried  with  clubbed  gun,  the  shouting  of  the 
officers,  the  groans  of  the  wounded  trampled  under  foot  as  the 
battle  rolled  back  and  forth  through  the  tangled  thickets,  were 
terrifying  and  made  a  scene  rarely  equaled  in  the  warfare  of 
the  border.  3 


3  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  XIII,  pp.  154,  155.  Report  of  Major 
James  O.  Gower,  First  Iowa  Cavalry,  to  Colonel  Fitz  Henry  Warren,  Com- 
manding Sub-District,  Butler,  Bates  County,  Mo.  Dated,  Clinton,  Henry 
County,  Mo.,  July  13,  1862. 

Also,  report  of  Captain  Henry  J.  Stierlin,  Company  A,  First  Missouri 
Cavalry,  to  Brig.-Gen.  James  Totten,  Commanding  Central  Division,  Mis- 
souri. Dated,  Warrensburg,  Mo.,  July  12,  1862. 

Also,  report  of  Captain  William  A.  Martin,  Company  C,  Seventh 
Missouri  Cavalry,  to  Major  A.  H.  Linder,  Commanding  Detachment  Seventh 
Missouri  Cavalry.  Dated,  Harrisonville,  Mo.,  July  12,  1862. 

The  Gregg  Manuscript  has  a  good  account  of  this  battle,  and  claims 
a  loss  of  four  dead,  only.  The  official  reports  state  the  losses  as  follows: 
Union  loss;  eleven  killed  and  twenty-one  wounded.  Guerrillas;  fourteen 
known  to  have  been  killed  —  probably  eighteen  killed  and  twenty-five  to 
thirty  wounded.  This  is  the  report  of  Major  Gower. 

At  the  ravine  Captain  Martin  had  one  killed  and  one  wounded.  He 
captured  thirty  horses  and  a  large  number  of  saddles,  blankets,  coats, 
guns,  and  other  equipments.  Captured  the  equipments,  overcoat  and  spy- 
glasa  of  Quantrill. 


QUANTRILL  AT  INDEPENDENCE 

INDEPENDENCE  was  in  1862  in  the  military  district  com- 
manded by  General  Totten,  with  headquarters  at  Jefferson 
City.  June  7,  1862,  he  assigned  Lieutenant-Colonel  James 
T.  Buel  to  the  command  of  the  post  at  Independence.  Buel  es- 
tablished a  camp  about  half  a  mile  west  of  the  public  square, 
on  the  south  side  of  Lexington  street.  The  camp  was  in  a  de- 
pression or  piece  of  low  land  used  as  a  pasture;  there  were  no 
buildings  in  or  near  it,  and  the  troops  were  sheltered  with  tents. 

Colonel  Buel  had  about  five  hundred  men  in  his  command. 
There  were  three  companies  of  the  Seventh  Missouri  Cavalry, 
commanded  by  Captain  Breckenridge ;  two  companies  of  Neu- 
gent's  Second  Battalion,  Missouri  Provisional  Militia,  com- 
manded by  Captain  Jacob  Axline  and  Captain  Aaron  Thomas; 
and  a  company  of  the  Sixth  Missouri  Enrolled  Militia,  under 
command  of  Captain  W.  H.  Rodewald,  which  was  temporarily 
attached  to  the  Seventh  Missouri.  Captain  Jacob  Axline  was 
ordered  to  report  to  Colonel  Buel  from  Kansas  City,  which  he 
did  on  Sunday,  August  10th. 

The  disposition  of  the  troops  of  the  command  was  the  worst 
that  could  have  been  made  at  all.  Colonel  Buel  had  his  head- 
quarters in  the  Southern  Bank  building  (now  known  as  the 
McCoy  Bank)  on  the  south  side  of  Lexington  street,  just  off 
the  southwest  corner  of  the  public  square.  His  guards,  under 
Captain  Rodewald,  were  quartered  in  buildings  on  the  opposite 
side  of  the  street.  The  provost-marshal  (acting)  was  Lieutenant 
Charles  W.  Meryhew,  of  the  Seventh  Missouri.  He  was  stationed 
at  the  county  jail,  on  North  Main  street,  one  block  from  the 
public  square.  The  three  companies  of  the  Seventh  Missouri 
and  the  two  companies  of  Neugent's  Battalion  were  camped  in 
the  pasture  a  full  half  mile  from  headquarters,  with  no  means 


260          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

of  maintaining  communication  with  the  commander  in  case  of 
an  attack.  This  proved  to  be  the  fatal  defect  of  position  when  the 
battle  came  to  be  fought. 

When  Quantrill  and  his  men  fled  from  the  battlefield  at 
the  ravines  they  went  to  the  head  waters  of  the  Little  Blue. 
Quantrill  was  hidden  away  nursing  his  wound  and  a  case  of 
erysipelas  which  it  brought  on.  Most  of  his  men  had  returned 
and  were  aiding  Colonel  Hays  to  recruit  his  regiment. 

After  the  battle  of  Pea  Ridge  the  Missouri  State  Guard  was 
reorganized,  and  that  part  which  entered  the  Confederate  ser- 
vice was  sent  east  of  the  Mississippi.  Those  who  did  not  enter 
that  service  straggled  back  to  Missouri  during  the  summer  and 
became  guerrillas.  It  was  to  gather  up  and  enlist  these  stragglers, 
or  some  of  them,  that  Upton  Hays  had  returned  to  Missouri. 
After  he  left  Quantrill  in  Henry  county  he  went  directly  to  Jack- 
son county  and  began  to  recruit  his  regiment,  in  which  work  he 
did  not  have  the  success  he  desired,  having  secured  only  about 
three  hundred  men  prior  to  the  battle  of  Independence. 

About  the  first  of  August,  1862,  Colonel  John  T.  Hughes 
arrived  in  Jackson  county  from  Arkansas.  He  had  with  him 
about  seventy-five  men.  It  was  his  design  to  recruit  a  brigade 
for  the  Confederate  army,  and  he  had  been  commissioned  a 
brigadier-general.  Hughes  was  a  good  soldier.  He  at  once 
thoroughly  informed  himself  of  the  disposition  of  the  Federal 
forces  in  Western  Missouri.  He  intended  to  recruit  his  brigade 
in  the  country  north  of  the  Missouri  river,  and  he  did  not  believe 
he  could  get  it  out  after  he  had  enlisted  it  with  Buel  in  possession 
of  Independence.  And  he  believed  the  men  of  that  section  would 
be  of  that  opinion,  which  would  make  it  difficult  to  induce  them 
to  enlist.  He  decided  to  stop  for  a  time  in  Jackson  county,  and 
went  into  camp  at  the  Charles  Cowherd  farm  near  Lee's  Sum- 
mit. There  he  raised  a  Confederate  flag  on  a  tall  pole  and  es- 
tablished a  recruiting  station.  This  flag  could  be  seen  from  the 
court-house  at  Independence.  Colonel  Hughes  intended  to  at- 
tack Colonel  Buel  and  capture  him  or  drive  him  from  Inde- 
pendence as  soon  as  he  could  muster  enough  men  to  do  it.  That 
was  a  part  of  his  plan  for  raising  and  taking  out  his  brigade. 


QUANTRILL  AT  INDEPENDENCE 


261 


If  he  could  go  into  North  Missouri  after  a  brilliant  victory  at 
Independence  he  could  quickly  raise  the  forces  he  desired  and 
could  get  them  out  before  troops  could  assemble  to  prevent  it. 
It  was  in  this  condition  and  from  this  necessity  confronting 
Colonel  Hughes  that  the  battle  of  Independence  originated. 

When  Colonel  Hughes  found  it  difficult  to  secure  recruits 
in  Jackson  county  and  that  he  would  not  be  able  to  attack 
Colonel  Buel  for  a  long  time,  he  decided  to  ask  Colonel  Hays 
and  Quantrill  to  aid  him.  Hays  and  Quantrill  must  have  been 
camped  in  the  vicinity  of  Blue  Springs,  and  some  of  their  bands 
were  probably  on  the  Sni.  Hays  gathered  his  men,  about  three 
hundred,  and  marched  to  join  Hughes.  This  was  on  Sunday, 
the  10th  of  August,  1862.  A  Mrs.  "Wilson  saw  them  march  past 
her  house,  about  three  miles  north  of  Blue  Springs,  at  ten 
o'clock  that  night.  She  was  a  loyal  woman,  and  she  immediately 
mounted  a  horse  and  rode  to  Independ- 
ence. She  reported  to  Colonel  Buel,  and 
in  the  presence  of  Captain  Rodewald,  that 
she  had  seen  these  men  march  by  her 
house  and  had  heard  they  were  to  attack 
Independence  that  night.  She  supposed 
there  were  a  thousand  of  them.  And  she 
had  heard  of  another  body  of  men,  on  the 
Sni,  perhaps  Quantrill 's,  who  would 
march  against  Independence  that  night, 
also.  Buel  treated  Mrs.  Wilson  rudely, 
and  the  information  which  she  had  been 
at  such  pains  to  bring  him  he  treated  with 
contempt.  Even  after  Colonel  Samuel  D. 
Lucas  had  vouched  for  the  honesty  and  general  good  character 
of  Mrs.  Wilson  he  refused  to  credit  the  information  she  gave  and 
declared  that  he  knew  how  to  take  care  of  himself  and  wished 
that  people  would  stop  bringing  in  such  reports.  It  was  gen- 
erally known  in  Independence  on  Sunday  that  the  town  would 
be  attacked  on  Monday  morning.  Indeed  it  had  been  known 
before  that,  and  some  people  had  gone  to  Kansas  City  almost  a 
week  before  the  battle  came,  to  be  out  of  it.  Buel  took  no  pre- 
cautions for  the  defense  of  the  town,  left  his  forces  scattered 


Colonel  Upton  Hay* 


262          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

about  and  officers  away  from  their  commands,  and  he  snored  in 
stupid  (imagined)  security  at  his  headquarters.1 

It  is  said  that  Colonel  Buel  intended  to  attack  the  camp  of 
Hughes  on  Monday,  and  that  on  Sunday  he  searched  Independ- 
ence and  seized  all  arms  and  ammunition  found.  That  no  prep- 
aration of  his  forces  for  such  an  attack  appears  would  indicate 
that  he  had  abandoned  that  design. 

The  attack  on  Independence  was  planned  by  Colonel  Hughes 
and  the  battle  was  fought  on  plans  laid  out  by  him.  Until  his 
death  he  was  in  command.  Hays  had  about  three  hundred  men, 
Hughes  one  hundred,  and  Quantrill  about  twenty-five.  Colonel 
Gid.  W.  Thompson  was  one  of  the  officers,  but  he  had  no  troops 
of  his  own  to  command.  In  assigning  the  officers  their  parts 
Colonel  Hughes  gave  Quantrill  two  things  to  do  —  one,  to  cut 
off  Buel  from  his  men ;  the  other,  to  picket  the  town  after  it  was 
taken.  He  said  to  Quantrill:  "You  will  be  well  supported.  In 
fact,  I  shall  be  right  behind  you  when  you  enter  the  public 
square."2 


i  The  incident  of  Mrs.  Wilson  'B  ride  to  try  to  save  the  Union  troops 
is  found  in  The  Civil  War  on  the  Border,  Vol.  I,  p.  316.  This  work  is  by 
Wiley  Britton,  who  was  a  Union  soldier,  and  it  is  one  of  the  best  authorities 
ever  written  on  the  Civil  War.  Mr.  Britton  gives  a  splendid  account  of  the 
battle  of  Independence  and  the  preliminary  movements  of  the  troops. 

a  Morgan  T.  Mattox,  one  of  Quantrill 's  men,  gave  the  author  the 
following  concerning  the  battle  of  Independence: 

On  the  Saturday  before  the  battle  of  Independence  Mattox  was  sent 
to  the  town  as  a  spy.  He  carried  a  supply  of  onions  and  pies  which  he 
sold  to  Buel's  men.  He  observed  the  whole  situation  and  returned  to 
Quantrill.  On  his  way  out  he  went  to  the  place  at  which  he  had  left  the 
command,  but  it  was  gone.  He  soon  met  Arch  Rockwell  who  took  him  to 
Quantrill,  to  whom  he  reported.  Quantrill  had  gone  to  the  camp  of  Hays 
and  Hughes  on  Saturday  night. 

To  reach  Independence  all  the  forces  went  by  the  Spring  Branch 
Road.  They  found  the  Federal  pickets  at  Mr.  Burford's  gate,  about  one 
hundred  and  fifty  yards  east  of  the  Spring  at  the  east  edge  of  Indepen- 
dence. The  Quantrill  men  ran  on  the  pickets  and  shot  them  down.  Then 
Quantrill  rushed  his  men  to  the  square. 

Colonel  Hughes  was  right  behind  Quantrill  and  he  did  not  stop  in 
the  town,  but  rushed  on  to  the  camp  of  the  Federals  west  of  town.  He 
was  killed  at  the  gate  of  the  field  in  which  the  Federals  were  camped. 
Kit  Chiles  was  killed  right  at  the  bank. 

Before  this  battle  Jim  Knowles,  of  Independence,  had  piloted  Buel 
into  the  Blue  Cut  neighborhood.  At  the  Blue  Cut,  Buel  met  George  Todd, 
Ed  Koger,  and  John  Little,  and  killed  Roger  and  Little.  Todd  got  away. 
This  gave  the  Quantrill  men  a  grudge  against  Knowles,  who  was  City 


QUANTBILL  AT  INDEPENDENCE  263 

It  was  the  plan  of  Colonel  Hughes  to  get  into  the  town  and 
take  possession  of  it,  with  the  main  part  of  his  force  between 
Buel  and  his  men,  without  firing  a  gun  or  raising  an  alarm. 
Quantrill  entered  the  town  by  Spring  street,  the  pickets  east  of 
the  town  on  the  Spring  Branch  road  being  found  dead  the  next 
day.  He  entered  the  public  square  and  waited  for  Hughes,  who 
entered  with  the  main  body,  on  the  Lexington  road,  just  a 
minute  later.  Hughes  dismounted  a  part  of  his  force  and  the 
horses  were  hitched  about  the  public  square.  Quantrill  then 
formed  his  men  into  platoons  and  rode  out  of  the  public  square 
west  on  Lexington  street  at  a  sharp  gait,  closely  followed  by 
Hughes  and  the  main  force.  It  was  half  past  four  o'clock  and 
not  yet  daylight.  The  guard  at  Captain  Rodewald's  quarters 
commanded  a  halt  and  fired  his  gun  to  alarm  his  comrades.  He 
rushed  into  the  guard-room  and  found  the  men  there  gettting  to 
arms.  The  street  was  soon  filled  with  Confederate  soldiers.  A 
few  shots  were  fired  into  them  from  a  second-story  window, 
when  some  one  there  cried  out:  "For  God's  sake  don't  fire;  it's 
your  own  men."  Believing  this  and  not  being  able  to  see  in 
the  darkness,  Captain  Rodewald  led  his  men  down  stairs  and 
out  into  the  street,  where  he  saw  a  Confederate  soldier  well 
known  to  him,  whom  he  took  prisoner.  He  called  to  his  men  that 
the  force  in  the  street  were  rebels,  and  ordered  them  to  form  into 
line,  which  they  did,  cutting  off  some  of  the  moving  column  of 
Confederates.  He  ordered  his  men  to  fire  into  the  receding 
ranks,  the  rear  of  which  was  yet  in  range,  and  they  did  so,  kill- 
ing Colonel  Kit  Chiles.  Captain  Rodewald  retained  his  position 
an  hour  and  a  half,  repulsing  three  attacks  of  the  enemy,  two 
from  the  public  square  and  one  from  the  west.  In  the  last  he 
mortally  wounded  Major  Hart  and  captured  a  lieutenant  and 
eleven  privates. 

Marshal  of  Independence.  One  day  he  killed  an  old  Irishman  who  was 
drunk  and  "cutting  up"  a  little.  For  this  he  was  put  in  jail,  and  was 
in  jail  when  the  battle  was  fought. 

Bill  Bassham  had  been  a  stage  driver  on  the  Old  Santa  Fe  Trail,  bat 
had  quit  and  come  home  to  Independence  about  the  time  Knowles  killed  the 
Irishman.  He  had  not  been  connected  with  the  war  in  any  way  at  that 
time,  but  some  one  preferred  the  charge  that  he  was  a  Quantrill  man, 
and  he  was  locked  up  in  jail. 

Quantrill 's  men  broke  into  the  jail  and  released  Bassham,  who  then 
and  there  joined  them.  George  Todd  then  shot  and  killed  Jim  Knowles. 


264          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Colonel  Buel  did  not  leave  his  headquarters  and  put  himself 
at  the  head  of  Captain  Rodewald's  men  and  make  an  effort  to 
reach  his  main  camp  as  a  brave  and  capable  officer  would  have 
done.  He  ordered  them  to  leave  the  street,  where  they  were 
fighting  bravely  and  maintaining  themselves  well,  and  come  into 
his  headquarters,  the  most  stupid  action  he  could  have  taken. 
The  enemy  surrounded  him  at  once,  and  Quantrill  was  sent  into 
a  store-building  on  the  opposite  side  of  the  street,  the  second 
story  of  which  commanded  the  front  windows  of  Buel's  rooms  in 
the  bank  building.  He  poured  in  a  perfect  hail  of  shot  until 
after  nine  o'clock,  when  Buel  surrendered. 

Colonel  Buel  did  nothing  to  save  the  day.  He  did  not  hoist 
his  flag  until  a  few  minutes  before  he  surrendered.  In  fact, 
the  flag  was  not  at  his  headquarters  but  at  Captain  Rodewald's 
quarters.  It  was  brought  over  by  a  bugler,  a  barefooted  boy  of 
sixteen,  who  volunteered  to  fetch  it.  He  crossed  the  street, 
secured  the  flag,  and  re-crossed  the  street  through  showers  of 
balls  fired  at  him,  and  came  off  unhurt.  There  was  not  even  a 
flag-staff,  and  two  of  Captain  Rodewald's  men  who  were  sent  up 
to  fasten  it  to  the  chimney  were  instantly  killed  on  the  roof  by 
Quantrill 's  men.  Then  the  Confederate  lieutenant  and  one  of 
his  men,  captured  in  the  last  charge  of  Captain  Rodewald,  were 
required  to  fasten  the  flag  to  the  chimney,  and  by  going  on  the 
roof  and  making  themselves  known  were  allowed  by  Quantrill 
to  do  so. 

The  troops  at  the  camp  and  at  the  jail  had  been  obliged  to 
rely  upon  themselves.  Lieutenant  Meryhew,  at  the  jail,  fired 
one  volley  and  then  abandoned  his  post  and  fled  through  the 
woods  to  Kansas  City,  where  he  arrived  with  fourteen  men  late 
in  the  afternoon. 3 

The  real  fighting  of  the  day  was  done  by  Captain  Axline 
and  the  men  he  was  able  to  rally  around  him.  The  Confederates 
struck  the  camp  just  at  daylight.  There  seems  to  have  been  no 

3  By  some  it  is  claimed  that  the  volley  fired  from  the  jail  wounded 
Major  Hart.  The  author  has  followed  Britton,  who  says  Hart  was  wound- 
ed in  the  last  charge  upon  Captain  Rodewald.  Webb,  in  Battles  and  Bio- 
graphies of  Missourians,  has  a  good  description  of  the  battle  of  Indepen- 
dence. 


QUANTEILL  AT  INDEPENDENCE  265 

guards  or  pickets  on  duty  anywhere.  The  Confederates  fired 
a  deliberate  volley  from  a  line  not  a  hundred  feet  from  the  -ents 
in  which  the  Union  soldiers  were  sleeping.  This  fire  killed 
many.  Those  uninjured  rushed  to  arms.  The  sudden  attack 
and  surprise  either  frightened  Captain  Breckenridge  or  else 
the  charge  that  he  had  conspired  to  surrender  the  men  into  the 
hands  of  the  enemy  was  true.  Immediately  after  the  first  fire 
he  called  out  in  a  loud  voice:  "Boys,  we  are  completely  sur- 
rounded, and  we  had  better  surrender."  His  call  to  surrender 
was  the  first  order  heard  by  the  troops  from  any  officer.  It  was 
successfully  offset  by  Captain  Axline,  who  cried  in  a  voice  heard 
above  the  roar  of  battle:  "Boys,  get  your  guns  and  ammuni- 
tion and  rally  behind  the  rock-fence."  This  was  a  stone  wall  or 
fence  half  a  mile  long,  running  east  and  west  along  the  south 
side  of  the  camp.  As  the  men  emerged  from  their  tents  they 
fired  with  spirit,  and,  directing  their  fire  to  the  east  and  south- 
east, they  were  able  to  check  the  enemy  long  enough  to  gain 
the  wall.  Many  of  them,  in  retreating,  were  pushed  west  beyond 
the  wall,  and  they  retreated  out  of  range.  Some  of  them  did 
not  stop  until  they  reached  Kansas  City.  Their  retreat  would 
have  been  disastrous  had  it  been  followed  up,  and  they  escaped, 
possibly,  only  because  after  the  first  volley  many  of  the  Con- 
federates ceased  fighting  and  began  to  plunder  the  abandoned 
tents  of  the  Union  troops. 

Captain  Axline  was  exposed  to  a  heavy  fire  from  front  and 
rear,  some  of  the  Confederates  being  far  enough  south  to  enfilade 
the  south  side  of  the  wall.  He  retreated  along  the  wall  until  he 
came  to  a  gully  three  or  four  feet  deep  which  it  crossed.  Here 
he  made  a  stand,  and  he  could  not  be  driven  out.  In  a  charge 
upon  the  right  of  Captain  Axline 's  position  here,  in  an  attempt 
to  flank  it,  Colonel  John  T.  Hughes  was  shot  in  the  forehead  and 
instantly  killed. 

Lieutenant  Herrington,  of  the  Missouri  State  Militia,  soon 
came  to  the  aid  of  Captain  Axline,  who  was  then  able  to  cover 
three-fourths  of  the  camp  with  his  fire.  His  position  was 
impregnable,  and  but  for  the  cowardice  of  Captain  Brecken- 
ridge he  would  have  held  out  and  saved  the  day.  Shortly  after 
getting  into  his  favorable  position  and  as  his  men  were  beginning 


266          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

to  have  confidence  in  their  ability  to  hold  the  field,  some  one 
called  attention  to  a  white  flag  hoisted  on  the  wall  to  the  west. 
Axline  directed  Lieutenant  Herrington  to  see  what  the  flag 
meant,  while  he  went  himself  to  gather  up  the  many  stragglers 
he  saw  in  that  direction,  leaving  Sergeant  Blake  in  command  of 
the  firing-line.  He  met  Captain  Breckenridge  with  a  white  flag 
tied  to  a  ramrod,  who  asked  if  he  should  hoist  it  and  was  told 
—  "certainly  not,"  and  that  "he  put  it  up  at  his  peril." 

Captain  Axline  discovered  that  there  were  a  number  of  men 
half  a  mile  west,  collected  in  a  house,  and  he  sent  Lieutenant 
Herrington  to  take  them  and  charge  up  the  street  on  the  north 
of  the  camp  and  clear  it  of  the  enemy,  which  was  successfully 
done.  Twenty  nen  were  sent  in  charge  of  a  sergeant  to  clear 
the  ground  and  corn-patches  in  front  and  to  the  south,  which 
was  quickly  done.  Captain  Axline  then  returned  to  his  main 
position,  which  was  bravely  held  by  Blake,  who  had  been  severely 
wounded  in  the  foot.  Two  thousand  rounds  of  ammunition  were 
served  to  the  men  and  preparations  made  to  move  forward  to 
the  public  square  in  three  detachments,  a  movement  which  would 
have  been  successfully  carried  out  and  snatched  victory  from 
defeat  had  not  messengers  arrived  from  Colonel  Buel  with  a 
white  flag  and  orders  to  surrender.  Axline  was  not  in  favor 
of  complying  with  this  order,  but  Captain  Breckenridge  and 
Adjutant  Preble  urged  him  to  do  so.  He  consented  with  much 
reluctance,  though  at  the  time  he  had  but  seventy-five  men.  The 
real  hero  of  the  battle  of  Independence  was  Captain  Jacob 
Axline,  able,  brave,  self-reliant,  patriotic. 

After  the  death  of  Colonel  Hughes,  Colonel  Thompson  took 
command  of  the  Confederate  forces.  He  also  made  a  charge 
on  the  Federal  right,  but  was  repulsed,  as  Colonel  Hughes  had 
been,  and  was  severely  wounded  in  one  of  his  legs.  Hays  then 
took  command,  but  prudently  avoided  a  grapple  with  Axline, 
and  contented  himself  with  sharp-shooting  from  protected  places. 
He  was  soon  wounded  in  the  foot. 

Colonel  Buel  insisted,  as  one  of  the  conditions  of  surrender, 
that  none  of  his  men  should  be  murdered  by  Quantrill  or  his 
men  after  they  became  prisoners,  and  this  provision  was  enforced 


QUANTRILL  AT  INDEPENDENCE  267 

by  Colonel  Thompson,  who,  though  suffering  from  his  wound, 
paroled  the  prisoners  after  the  battle  was  over. 

The  Federal  loss  was  twenty-six  killed  and  seventy-four 
wounded ;  eleven  of  the  wounded  died.  About  one  hundred  and 
fifty  surrendered.  The  Confederates  left  on  the  field  twenty- 
three  dead  men,  of  whom  ten  were  officers.  They  also  left  nine 
men  mortally  wounded.  Many  wounded  had  been  sent  to  their 
homes  in  the  neighborhood,  as  were  some  of  the  dead.  The  rage 
of  the  Confederates  against  the  Germans  was  vented  upon  Cap- 
tain Thomas.  He  was  killed  in  his  room,  his  body  horribly 
mangled  and  kicked  down  stairs.^ 

The  victory  at  Independence  was  not  worth  what  it  cost  the 
Confederates.  They  secured  enough  arms  and  ammunition  to 
arm  the  slim  regiment  of  Hays,  and  they  carried  away  camp- 
plunder  to  the  amount  of  twenty  or  more  wagon-loads,  after 
burning  much  and  allowing  Quantrill  to  hide  a  quantity  which 
he  could  not  take  with  him  at  the  time.  But  their  ablest  officer, 
one  of  the  ablest  in  Missouri,  was  killed,  and  most  other  officers 
either  killed  or  wounded.  They  marched  out  of  Independence 
towards  the  camp  of  Hays,  in  the  direction  of  Blue  Springs, 
about  five  o'clock  in  the  afternoon,  scattered  and  disappeared. 

Buel  and  his  men,  paroled,  were  left  at  Independence,  where 
they  remained  a  few  days,  when  they  marched  to  Kansas  City, 
and  later  were  sent  to  St.  Louis  and  quartered  in  Benton  Bar- 
racks. They  were  mustered  out  of  the  service.  Buel  and  Breck- 
enridge  were  both  tried  for  conspiracy  and  cowardice,  but  as 
they  were  to  be  mustered  out  at  once  no  strenuous  efforts  were 
made  to  convict  them  and  they  escaped  justice. 

Quantrill  and  his  men  claimed  credit  for  the  victory,  and 
there  is  merit  in  this  claim.  They  made  the  attack  on  the  bank 
building  so  fierce  and  effective  that  Buel  surrendered.  The 
entry  of  the  Confederate  army  into  the  town  without  causing 
an  alarm  was  due  to  their  familiarity  with  the  country,  the  town, 
the  disposition  of  the  Federal  troops  —  and,  not  least,  the  deaths 

4  Leaven  worth  Conservative,  August  13,  1862.  Files  in  library  of 
the  Kansas  State  Historical  Society.  Britton  says  Captain  Thomas  was 
killed  while  endeavoring  to  reach  the  camp  from  a  hotel,  and  says  nothing 
of  mutilation. 


268          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

of  the  outlying  pickets.  They  were  active  in  all  parts  of  the 
battle.  Captain  Gregg  broke  down  the  doors  of  the  jail  and 
released  Southern  sympathizers  imprisoned  there.  James 
Knowles,  charged  with  killing  a  Southern  man,  was  shot  in  his 
cell.s 


s  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  XIII,  pp.  226,  227,  show  the  official 
report!  of  Colonel  Buel  and  Captain  Axline. 


CHAPTER  XXI 


QUANTRILL    A    CONFEDERATE    CAPTAIN 

FROM  the  victorious  field  of  Independence  Quantrill  moved 
his  men  to  the  Morgan  Walker  farm,  where  he  remained 
until  late  in  the  day  of  the  12th  of  August.     Then  he 
marched  to  the  Ingraham  farm,  six  miles  west  of  Lone  Jack. 
There  the  fourth  day  after  the  battle  of  Independence,  he  and 
his  men  were  regularly  mustered  into  the  Confederate  service. 

From  the  fifteenth  day  of  August,  1862,  the  Confederate 
government  was  responsible  for  all  the  acts  of  Quantrill  and  his 
men.     From  that  day  they  were  regular  Confederate  soldiers, 
properly  enrolled,  with  officers  regularly 
commissioned.      Quantrill    was    commis- 
sioned captain.     One  hundred  and  fifty 
men  were  mustered  under  him.    A  mili- 
tary  organization   was   effected,    as   fol- 
lows: 

Captain,  William  Clarke  Quantrill. 

First  Lieutenant,  William  Hallar. 

Second  Lieutenant,  George  Todd. 

Third  Lieutenant,  William  H.  Gregg. 

On  the  morning  of  the  16th  of  Aug- 
ust Quantrill  took  ninety  of  his  men  to 
Independence  to  carry  out  camp-plunder 
stored  there  by  him  after  the  battle  was 
over.  He  thus  avoided  the  battle  of  Lone  Jack,  which  was 
fought  on  that  day.  It  has  been  charged  that  he  was  not  pleased 
with  the  presence  of  the  larger  lights  and  greater  personages 
of  the  Confederacy  then,  appearing  in  Jackson  county,  and  that 
he  purposely  absented  himself  that  day  to  avoid  helping  them 
win  a  victory.  He  left  sixty  of  his  men  in  camp  at  the  Adams 
farm  with  peremptory  orders  to  fiallar,  whom  he  left  in  com- 
mand, not  to  move  under  any  circumstances  without  orders  from 


Arch  Clements 


270          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

him,  unless  attacked  and  driven  away  by  the  enemy.  He  knew 
the  enemy  was  in  the  vicinity.  He  had  decided  to  let  these 
"big  guns"  fight  their  own  battle.  He  resented  their  invasion 
of  his  territory.  They  brought  soldierly  rules  and  permitted  no 
murder  of  prisoners.  He  made  war  in  no  such  feminine  fashion. 
If  mawkish  sentiment  was  to  prevail  upon  the  gory  field  he  would 
be  absent  and  employ  himself  in  lugging  off  the  loot  of  a  former 
action. 

Quantrill  must  have  started  early  to  Independence,  for  at 
eight  o'clock  a  messenger  from  Hays  arrived  at  the  Adams  farm 
with  a  dispatch  requesting  his  aid.  Hallar  refused  to  go.  Late 
in  the  afternoon  another  arrived  with  a  more  urgent  message. 
Gregg  persuaded  Hallar  to  heed  this  request,  though  he  knew 
it  was  in  disobedience  to  express  orders.  The  men  were  mounted 
and  put  upon  the  road,  going  in  on  the  dead  run.  But  the  battle 
was  over.  They  gathered  in  the  straggling  fugitives  found  try- 
ing to  escape  to  the  number  of  one  hundred  and  fifty. 

After  the  battle  of  Lone  Jack,  Quantrill  established  a  camp 
three  miles  east  of  Lee's  Summit  on  the  east  branch  of  the  Little 
Blue.  Colonel  Hays  lingered  in  Jackson  county  some  ten  days 
after  the  battle  of  Lone  Jack.  When  he  was  ready  to  leave 
for  Arkansas  he  turned  over  to  Quantrill,  Lieutenant  Copeland, 
of  Neugent's  regiment,  whom  he  had  captured  at  the  battle 
of  Lone  Jack.  He  knew  that  Quantrill  would  have  him  shot, 
and  turned  him  over  for  that  reason.  The  execution  of  Copeland 
is  thus  described  in  the  Gregg  Manuscript: 

On  the  evening  of  August  28,  1862,  Charles  Cowherd  and 
William  Howard  came  to  our  camp,  bringing  with  them  a  copy 
of  the  Missouri  Republican.  Quantrill  was  seated  by  a  table 
reading  this  paper.  Gregg  was  sitting  by  the  table  waiting  to 
see  the  paper.  Suddenly  I  saw  a  change  come  over  Quan trill's 
countenance;  he  dropped  the  paper  and  drew  a  blank-book  and 
pencil  from  his  pocket.  He  wrote  a  note  and  handed  it  to  Gregg, 
telling  him  to  give  it  to  Blunt.  Being  anxious  to  know  what 
was  up,  I  opened  the  note  and  read : 

"Take  Lieutenant  Copeland  out  and  shoot  him.  Go  to 
Woodsmall's  camp,  get  two  prisoners  from  his  camp,  shoot  them, 
and  return  as  quickly  as  possible." 

Perry  Hoy,  who,  it  will  be  remembered,  was  captured  from 
our  command  at  the  Tate  House,  and  for  whom  we  had  tried 


QUANTRILL  A  CONFEDERATE  CAPTAIN        271 

to  exchange  the  Kansas  Lieutenant,  had  been  shot  at  Fort  Leav- 
enworth.  "When  Blunt  returned  from  the  execution  of  the  pris- 
oners we  were  ordered  to  saddle  up  and  prepare  to  move.  On 
inquiry  I  learned  from  Quantrill  that  he  was  going  to  Kansas 
to  kill  ten  men  for  Perry  Hoy.  We  moved  to  the  vicinity  of 
Red  Bridge,  near  the  Kansas  line,  where  we  remained  until  the 
next  afternoon,  when  we  marched  on  Olathe,  the  county-seat  of 
Johnson  County,  Kansas.  However,  before  we  reached  Olathe 
we  had  killed  ten  men,  most  of  whom  were  known  to  our  men. 
But  we  had  started  to  take  the  town  and  persisted  in  that  pur- 
pose. When  we  arrived  near  the  place,  Quantrill  ordered  Lieu- 
tenant Gregg  to  advance  with  sixty  men  and  throw  a  cordon 
about  the  town  that  no  one  might  escape,  which  was  accom- 
plished. Quantrill  with  the  remaining  men  marched  to  the  cen- 
ter of  the  town.  On  their  arrival  at  Court  Square  they  found 
one  hundred  and  twenty-five  Federal  soldiers  drawn  up  on  the 
sidewalk  on  the  south  side  of  the  square.  It  was  determined  to 
capture  these  men  without  bloodshed.  Quantrill  ordered  his  men 
to  hitch  their  horses  to  the  courtyard  fence  in  close  order,  and 
when  this  was  done,  to  form  in  the  rear  of  the  horses.  This  com- 
pleted, they  drew  their  revolvers  and  ordered  the  Federals  to 
surrender,  which  they  did  without  firing  a  shot.  One  man 
refused  to  give  up  his  gun  and  was  shot  and  killed.  So,  we  had 
killed  fourteen  men  for  Perry  Hoy! 

We  remained  in  Olathe  until  morning,  when  we  marched  our 
prisoners  out  on  the  prairie  about  two  miles  from  town,  paroled 
them,  and  turned  them  loose.  . 

It  will  be  seen  from  this  account  that  the  raid  on  Olathe  was 
for  the  purpose  of  avenging  the  execution  of  Perry  Hoy.  But 
Captain  Gregg  has  the  date  wrong.  The  guerrillas  entered  the 
town  the  afternoon  of  the  6th  of  September  and  remained  until 
the  7th.1  They  numbered  one  hundred  and  forty  men.  Frank 
Cook,  John  J.  Judy,  and  his  brother,  James  B.  Judy,  all  of  whom 
had  enlisted  in  the  Twelfth  Kansas  a  short  time  before,  were 
killed  just  before  the  town  was  entered.  Hiram  Blanchard,  of 
Spring  Hill,  was  in  Olathe  at  the  time ;  he  protested  against  the 
action  of  the  guerrillas  in  stealing  his  horse  and  tried  to  prevent 


i  Andreas'*  History  of  Kansas  gives  the  date  as  the  6th.  Wilder  'a 
Annals  of  Kansas  fixes  the  date  on  the  7th.  Both  are  right,  as  Quantrill 
was  there  both  days  —  came  in  on  the  6th  and  left  on  the  7th. 


272          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

it,  and  was  shot  and  killed.  Josiah  Skinner  and  Phillip  Wiggins 
were  both  shot  and  killed ;  they  were  citizens  and  not  soldiers.2 

Quantrill  was  very  proud  of  his  official  position  with  the 
Confederate  government.  He  carried  with  him  his  commission 
as  captain  in  the  Confederate  service,  and  he  exhibited  it  to  those 
he  wished  to  impress  with  the  dignity  of  his  office  and  his  impor- 
tance and  standing.  While  walking  about  the  public  square, 
reviewing  the  citizens  of  the  town,  all  of  whom  were  bunched 
there  and  held  under  guard,  he  recognized  Judge  E.  W.  Robin- 
son, then  and  now  a  citizen  of  Paola.  He  called  Robinson  out 
to  the  fence,  which  surrounded  the  square,  and  upon  which  they 
seated  themselves  and  talked  for  more  than  an  hour.  Quantrill 
repudiated  the  familiar  name  of  "Bill"  by  which  he  was  known 
in  Paola  and  requested  Robinson  to  address  him  as  "Captain 
Quantrill, ' '  producing  at  the  same  time  his  commission  as  captain 
for  the  judge's  inspection.3 

Quantrill  robbed  stores  and  dwellings.  All  the  people  were 
plundered.  Horses  and  wagons  were  stolen  and  loaded  with  loot 
from  the  sacked  town.  On  the  7th  of  September  Quantrill 

2  In  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  XIII,  p.  803,  will  be  found  the 
letter  of  Dr.  Thomas  Hamil,  dated  Leavenworth  City,  November  6,  1862, 
to  Major  General  Curtis,  a  portion  of  which  is  here  set  out: 

I  have  been  living  in  Johnson  County,  Kansas,  for  four  years.  I 
was  in  Olathe  when  Quantrill  came  there;  he  took  everything  of  wearing 
apparel  and  all  the  horses  that  he  could  get;  he  took  all  of  my  clothes, 
a  good  horse,  and  a  fine  gold  watch;  but  we  did  not  care  for  being  robbed, 
if  he  had  not  killed  our  citizens  in  cold  blood,  taking  our  best  citizens 
from  the  bosom  of  their  families  and  shooting  them  down  like  so  many 
hogs.  It  is  horrible  to  relate.  .  .  .  Nearly  all  the  families  have  left 
between  us  and  the  line. 

3  Letter  of  E.  W.  Robinson  to  W.  W.  Scott,  dated,  Paola,  Kansas, 
May  9,  1881,  now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.    Robinson  was  probate 
judge  of  Miami  county  when  the  letter  was  written.     This  letter  has  been 
quoted  from,  ante,  in  relation  to  the  Morgan  Walker  raid.     Concerning 
his  capture  at  Olathe,  Judge  Robinson  says: 

I  saw  no  more  of  him  until  September,  1862  —  when  he  sacked 
Olathe.  He  had  with  him  at  that  time  220  men.  Quantrill  recognized  me 
among  the  prisoners,  invited  me  outside  the  corral,  to  a  seat  beside  him 
surrounding  the  public  square,  where  we  talked  for  more  than  an  hour. 
During  the  conversation  I  addressed  him  once  as  "Bill"  —  he  very  politely 
requested  me  to  address  him  as  ' '  Captain  Quantrill, ' '  and  took  from  his 
pocket  and  showed  me  what  he  claimed  was  a  commission  from  the  Con- 
federate Government,  but  I  did  not  read  it,  —  being  an  old  acquaintance, 
and  having  no  grudge  against  me,  he  treated  me  kindly.  Not  more  than 
a  dozen  persons  were  killed  on  this  raid,  the  object  being  plunder. 


QUANTRILL  A  CONFEDERATE  CAPTAIN         273 

marched  his  prisoners  out  of  the  town  and  paroled  them.  Then 
he  took  his  way  over  the  prairies  back  to  Missouri,  his  band  bur- 
dened to  its  full  capacity  and  staggering  under  the  spoil  of  Kan- 
sas citizens. 

From  Olathe  Quantrill  went  to  Johnson  county,  Mo.  Col- 
onel John  T.  Burris  was  sent  to  capture  him  or  disperse  his  com- 
mand. He  found  the  guerrillas  near  Columbus,  Johnson  county. 
They  were  driven  to  Lafayette  county,  where  they  camped  on 
the  farm  of  Harvey  Gleaves.  A  party  was  sent  out  on  the  Texas 
prairie  to  gather  provisions.  This  party  was  fallen  upon  by  a 
squad  of  militia  from  Lexington  and  narrowly  escaped  capture. 
Hastening  to  camp  and  securing  reinforcements  the  guerrillas 
followed  the  militia,  coming  up  with  them  at  Wellington,  driving 
them  from  the  town  to  the  bridge  over  the  Sni,  where  a  stand  was 
made.  The  guerrillas  charged  across  the  bridge  and  scattered 
the  militia,  killing  some  of  them,  and  having  one  man,  Lieutenant 
Ferd  Scott,  wounded  in  the  side.  The  guerrillas  returned  to 
their  camp  and  the  whole  command  marched  to  the  village  of 
Mecklin,  where  supper  was  had.  Colonel  Burris  was  in  close  pur- 
suit. The  guerrillas  camped  three  miles  north  of  Mecklin,  moved 
at  daylight  to  Bone  Hill,  where  they  were  discovered  at  breakfast 
and  routed.  Colonel  Burris  followed  them  all  day,  and  at  four 
o'clock  in  the  afternoon  came  up  with  them  on  the  high  prairie 
four  miles  north  of  Pleasant  Hill.  There  they  were  defeated  in 
a  short  sharp  battle  and  lost  some  killed  and  wounded,  among 
the  former,  Young  Simmons,  of  Westport.  They  fled  to  the 
timber  and  scattered-,  preventing  further  pursuit. 

The  guerrillas  assembled  again  in  a  week.  Colonel  Penick, 
then  in  command  at  Independence,  sent  Captain  David  with  his 
company  to  look  for  them.  David  camped  at  the  Morgan  Walker 
farm  the  night  of  the  5th  of  October,  and  on  the  6th  he  discov- 
ered Quan trill's  camp  between  Sibley  and  Big  Hill  —  about  a 
mile  from  Sibley.  Quantrill  broke  camp  and  moved  along  the 
Lexington  and  Independence  road  to  the  Garrison  farm  where 
the  Sibley  road  came  in.  There  an  ambush  was  prepared  for 
Captain  David,  and  Colonel  Dick  Chiles  was  put  in  command 
of  it.  Captain  David  found  this  ambush  in  an  old  log  house  at  a 
sharp  turn  in  the  road.  The  house  was  surrounded  by  a  high 

18 


274          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

rail  fence  enclosing  a  patch  of  half  an  acre.  In  the  first  charge 
of  Captain  David,  Colonel  Chiles  was  shot  through  the  lungs, 
dying  from  that  wound  soon  after  the  war  closed.  Another 
guerrilla  was  wounded.  Quantrill  had  not  wished  to  trust 
Chiles,  but  had  been  induced  to  do  so  by  Gregg  and  Todd.  See- 
ing that  the  fight  was  lost,  Quantrill  retreated  to  the  brush.  Cap- 
tain David  lost  one  man  killed,  one  mortally  wounded,  and  one 
slightly  wounded. 

The  following  day  Captain  David  continued  the  pursuit  of 
Quantrill,  and  at  night  the  guerrillas  scattered  to  avoid  being 
chased  longer,  having  scattered  and  assembled  a  number  of  times 
during  the  day .4 

Quantrill  soon  planned  another  raid  into  Kansas  and 
selected  Shawneetown,  a  village  in  Johnson  county,  near  the  Mis- 
souri line,  and  doomed  it  to  the  torch.  He  reached  the  town  on 
the  17th  of  October.  Just  before  he  arrived  at  the  town  he  came 
upon  a  wagon-train  passing  over  the  Santa  Fe  Trail,  guarded  by 
an  infantry  escort.  This  escort  had  stopped  to  rest.  Most  of 
the  men  were  asleep.  No  guard  had  been  posted.  The  guer- 
rillas pounced  upon  this  somnolent  escort  and  slew  one-half  of 
it  —  about  fifteen  men  —  and  scattered  the  remainder.  This 
whetted  their  appetites  for  blood,  and  the  guerrillas  dashed  into 
Shawneetown  and  murdered  seven  citizens  there.  The  brand  was 
applied  and  the  village  reduced  to  ashes.  A  Mr.  Stiles  and  a 
Mr.  Becker  were  killed  in  the  town,  and  James  Warfield,  a  Shaw- 
nee  Indian,  and  three  others  were  chased  out  and  killed  in  the 
fields  and  highways.  The  stores  were  robbed,  and  horses  and 
household  goods  were  taken  back  to  Missouri.s 

4  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  XIII,  p.  312.  Beport  of  Captain 
Daniel  H.  David,  Fifth  Missouri  Cavalry  (Militia)  to  Colonel  W.  K.  Pen- 
ick.  Dated,  Independence,  Mo.,  October  8,  1862. 

s  Still  the  excuse  for  sacking  Lawrence  was  that  Kansas  troops  robbed 
the  citizens  of  Missouri  and  killed  them!  Fourteen  men  are  admitted  to 
have  been  killed  by  Quantrill  in  the  Olathe  raid;  perhaps  many  more  were 
killed.  Seven  citizens  were  killed  in  the  Shawneetown  raid  —  twenty-one 
Kansas  citizens  killed  on  Kansas  soil  minding  their  own  affairs.  And  this 
in  a  little  more  than  two  months.  And  two  towns  sacked,  one  of  them 
destroyed  by  the  torch!  And  hundreds  of  Missouri  citizens  in  Missouri 
in  the  same  time  butchered  in  their  own  homes!  How  preposterous  the 


QUANTRILL  A  CONFEDERATE  CAPTAIN          275 

The  leaves  were  down,  the  trees  were  stripped,  the  thickets 
on  the  Sni,  the  Little  Blue,  and  the  Grand  were  bare.  All  the 
hiding-places  were  uncovered,  and  the  disloyal  element  in  Mis- 
souri began  to  move  and  show  signs  of  uneasiness.  The  guen 
rillas  and  their  abettors  ran  together  in  bunches  and  skulked 
in  heavily  timbered  bottoms  and  along  naked  hillsides. 
Thoughts  of  security  inside  the  Confederate  lines  in  Arkansas 
filled  their  minds.  A  rendezvous  was  fixed  by  Quantrill  on  Big 
Creek,  Cass  county,  near  the  field  where  Captain  Martin  had 
beset  the  guerrillas  and  smote  them  so  sorely.  The  location  of 
this  camp  was  sent  broadcast,  and  it  was  noised  abroad  that  all 
who  wished  to  go  inside  the  Confederate  lines  would  be  welcomed 
and  carried  there  in  safety.  Many  responded. 

The  march  south  was  commenced  on  the  3d  day  of  Novem- 
ber. Quantrill  had  one  hundred  and  fifty  guerrillas,  and  many 
fugitives.  Cole  Younger,  Joe  Lea,  and  Dick  Yager  each  remained 
in  Missouri  with  a  small  squad.  Hallar  had  left  Quantrill 
because  of  a  disagreement  with  Todd  and  had  gone  into  a  squad 
commanded  by  one  Harrison,  whose  men  went  south  with  Quan- 
trill. 

On  the  day  that  Quantrill  began  his  march  south  Colonel 
Edwin  C.  Catherwood,  Sixth  Missouri  Cavalry,  started  a  train 
of  thirteen  empty  wagons  back  from  Harrisonville  to  Sedalia, 
with  an  escort  of  twenty-one  men  commanded  by  Lieutenant  W. 
M.  Newby,  Company  G-,  Sixth  Missouri.  About  four  o'clock  in 
the  afternoon  Lieutenant  Demuel  Campbell  reported  that  he  had 
seen  Quantrill 's  command  marching  down  the  divide  between 

excuses  that  have  been  made  for  the  actions  of  Quantrill!  The  falsity 
and  hypocrisy  of  these  excuses  have  been  shown  to  this  point.  The  excuses 
for  the  actions  following  will  be  shown  to  have  been  more  ridiculous. 

William  Laurie  was  captured  by  the  guerrillas  in  this  raid.  In  Kan- 
gas  City  he  had  refused  to  aid  in  the  hoisting  of  rebel  flags  and  was 
threatened  with  death.  Fearing  to  remain  in  Kansas  City,  he  moved  to 
Shawneetown  and  engaged  in  photography.  When  the  guerrillas  entered 
the  town  his  partner  was  shot,  but  not  killed,  and  he  was  captured  and 
stripped  of  his  clothing  except  his  underwear.  He  was  put  to  loading  a 
wagon  which  the  guerrillas  took  back  to  Missouri.  After  dark  a  lamp 
was  furnished  him  to  work  by,  and  when  the  wind  blew  it  out  he  ran  into 
a  field  and  escaped.  He  and  his  brother  were  murdered  by  the  guerrillas 
at  Lawrence. 


276          QTJANTRILL  AND  THE  BOEDER  WARS 

Harrisonville  and  Rose  Hill.  This  made  Colonel  Catherwood 
apprehensive  for  the  safety  of  his  train,  and  he  took  one  hun- 
dred and  fifty  men  and  started  out  to  protect  it.  But  he  was 
too  late.  Gregg  had  been  given  forty  men  and  ordered  to  attack 
the  train,  which  he  did,  capturing  it  and  scattering  the  escort, 
killing  four  soldiers  and  six  teamsters,  and  wounding  two  sol- 
diers and  one  teamster.  Lieutenant  Newby  was  captured,  also 
some  privates.  At  the  first  sight  of  the  guerrillas  he  had  cor- 
ralled his  wagons  and  made  an  effort  to  get  his  men  inside,  but 
the  guerrillas  were  down  upon  him  before  this  could  be  done. 
The  night  came  on  cloudy  and  dark,  but  Colonel  Catherwood 
pursued  the  enemy,  coming  upon  him  in  camp  two  miles  south 
of  the  battlefield.  He  attacked  the  guerrillas  and  recovered  Lieu- 
tenant Newby  and  one  private,  killing  six  and  wounding  twenty- 
one  of  the  enemy.6 

Quantrill  met  Colonel  Warner  Lewis  a  short  distance  north 
of  Lamar.  Lewis  had  three  hundred  men.  He  induced  Quan- 
trill to  undertake  the  capture  of  the  Union  garrison  at  Lamar. 
Quantrill,  when  told  that  the  Union  troops  were  quartered  in 
the  court-house,  a  brick  building,  was  not  sanguine  of  success. 
The  attack  was  to  be  made  at  ten  o  'clock  at  night,  and  Quantrill 
was  to  come  in  from  the  south,  while  Lewis  was  to  enter  the  town 
from  the  north.  Quantrill  was  on  time  and  drove  in  the  pickets. 
Lewis  did  not  make  his  appearance  at  all,  but  Quantrill  attacked 
the  force  in  the  court-house  and  fought  there  two  hours,  accom- 
plishing nothing,  but  losing  two  men  killed,  Peter  Burton  and 
James  Donohoe.  He  burned  a  portion  of  the  town,  the  fire 
destroying  the  court-house.  The  attack  was  on  the  night  of  the 
5th  of  November  1862.7 


6  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  XIII,  p.  347.     Report  of  Colonel 
Edwin  C.  Catherwood,  Sixth  Missouri  Cavalry  (Militia)  to  Brig.-Gen.  Ben. 
Loan,    Commanding    Central    District    of    Missouri.     Dated,    Harrisonville, 
Mo.,  November  5,  1862. 

7  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  XIII,  p.  796.    Eeport  of  Brig.-Gen, 
E.  B.  Brown  to  Brig.-Gen.  John  M.  Sehofield,  Commanding  Army  of  the 
Frontier.     Dated,  Springfield,  Mo.,  November  16,  1862. 

Also,  Eeport  of  Major  Benjamin  S.  Henry,  Third  Wisconsin  Cavalry, 
to  Brig.-Gen.  James  G.  Blunt.  Dated,  Port  Scott,  Kansas,  November  11, 
1862. 


QUANTRILL  A  CONFEDERATE  CAPTAIN        277 

"When  Quantrill  drew  off  his  men  at  Lamar  he  continued 
on  his  way  to  the  southward,  causing  some  alarms  by  the  way. 
He  went  to  Fort  Smith,  passing  down  the  old  Fort  Scott  and 
Fort  Gibson  road.  Upon  his  arrival  in  the  Confederate  linei 
his  band  was  attached  to  the  command  of  General  Shelby. 


CHAPTER  XXII 

QUANTRILL  GOES  TO  RICHMOND,  VIRGINIA 

WHILE  Quan trill's  company  was  attached  to  the  com- 
mand of  General  J.  0.  Shelby  when  it  reached  the 
Confederate  lines  in  Arkansas,  Quantrill  himself  did 
not  remain  with  it.  Gregg  was  then  his  first  lieutenant,  and 
Quantrill  turned  the  company  over  to  him,  and  set  out  for  Rich- 
mond, Virginia,  to  secure  permission  to  enlist  a  regiment  under 
the  Confederate  Partisan  Eanger  Act.  It  was  his  ambition  to 
be  the  colonel  of  a  regiment.  For  this  strange  being,  this  myste- 
rious person  who  was  not  surfeited  with  the  stream  of  blood  he 
had  caused  to  flow  in  Kansas  and  Missouri  since  the  year  1859, 
had  ambition  to  rise  in  the  Confederate  world.  And  we  shall 
see  that  he  had  marked  out  bloody  lines  along  which  he  hoped 
to  advance — along  which  he  had  dreamed  he  might  even  lead 
the  Confederacy.  If  he  was  not  blood-mad,  insane,  he  was  a 
monster,  the  most  gory,  blood-thirsty  and  horrible  character  in 
American  history.  And  the  actions  of  his  whole  life  would  indi- 
cate that  he  was  degenerate  and  depraved  rather  than  insane  — 
that  he  loved  to  kill  —  delighted  in  murder  and  rapine. 

Quantrill  must  have  departed  from  Richmond  very  soon  after 
reaching  the  Confederate  lines,  for  General  Shelby  began  his 
invasion  of  Missouri  before  the  end  of  November,  and  the  guer- 
rilla command  took  part  in  all  the  battles  of  that  campaign, 
beginning  with  Cane  Hill,  which  was  fought  on  the  28th  of 
November.  Quantrill  took  with  him  Blunt  and  Higbee.  He 
accomplished  little  at  Richmond.  His  program  for  conducting 
the  course  of  the  Confederacy  did  not  favorably  appeal  to  the 
War  Office.  To  his  surprise  and  chagrin  his  plan  for  a  general 
massacre  and  the  hoisting  of  the  black  flag  by  the  Confederacy 
was  rejected.  It  is  said  by  some  that  he  received  no  commission, 
and  by  others  that  he  did  receive  one.  It  is  known  that  he 
insisted  that  he  was  a  colonel,  and  that  he  secured  a  Confed- 


QUANTRILL  GOES  TO  RICHMOND,  VIRGINIA     279 

erate  colonel's  uniform  and  had  himself  photographed  with  it 
on.  And  he  signed  the  official  report  of  the  Baxter  Springs  mas- 
sacre as  "Colonel."  It  is  very  probable  that  he  was  given  the 
commission  he  sought  and  sent  back  to  Missouri  with  a  promotion 
as  to  rank  but  the  refusal  of  permission  to  recruit  himself  a  regi- 
ment. But  there  is  nothing  certainly  known  on  this  subject.1 


i  All  that  we  know  of  what  passed  between  Quantrill  and  the  officials 
of  the  Confederacy  is  contained  in  the  statement  of  General  Louis  T. 
Wigfall,  then  a  Senator  from  Texas,  who  was  present  when  Quantrill 
presented  his  plan.  The  only  account  of  this  interview  seen  by  the 
author  is  that  given  by  Major  Edwards.  It  is  embellished  by  him,  no 
doubt,  and  is  embodied  in  his  florid  rhetoric,  and  it  is  given  here  for  what 
it  may  prove  to  be  worth: 

His  interview  at  Bichmond  with  the  Confederate  Secretary  of  War 
was  a  memorable  one.  Gen.  Louis  T.  Wigfall,  then  a  Senator  from 
Texas,  was  present  and  described  it  afterwards  in  his  rapid,  vivid,  pictur- 
esque way.  Quantrell  asked  to  be  commissioned  as  a  Colonel  under  the 
Partisan  Eanger  Act,  and  to  be  so  recognized  by  the  Department  as  to 
have  accorded  to  him  whatever  protection  the  Confederate  government 
might  be  in  a  condition  to  exercise.  Never  mind  the  question  of  men,  he 
would  have  the  complement  required  in  a  month  after  he  reached  Western 
Missouri.  The  warfare  was  desperate,  he  knew,  the  service  desperate, 
everything  connected  with  it  was  desperate;  but  the  Southern  people  to 
succeed  h*"!  to  fight  a  desperate  fight.  The  Secretary  suggested  that  war 
had  its  amenities  and  its  refinements,  and  that  in  the  nineteenth  century 
it  was  simple  barbarism  to  talk  of  a  black  flag. 

' '  Barbarism  I ' '  and  Quantrell 's  blue  eyes  blazed,  and  his  whole 
manner  and  attitude  underwent  a  transformation,  "barbarism,  Mr.  Secre- 
tary, means  war  and  war  means  barbarism.  Since  you  have  touched  upon 
this  subject,  let  us  discuss  it  a  little.  Times  have  their  crimes  as  well  as 
men.  For  twenty  years  this  cloud  has  been  gathering;  for  twenty  years 
—  inch  by  inch  and  little  by  little  those  people  called  the  Abolitionists  have 
been  on  the  track  of  slavery;  for  twenty  years  the  people  of  the  South 
have  been  robbed,  here  of  a  negro  and  there  of  a  negro  [many  of  these 
negroes  stolen  from  the  South  by  Quantrill  —  W.  E.  C.] ;  for  twenty  years 
hates  have  been  engendered  and  wrathful  things  laid  up  against  the  day 
of  wrath.  The  cloud  has  burst.  Do  not  condemn  the  thunderbolt." 

The  War  Secretary  bowed  his  head.  Quantrell,  leaving  his  own  seat, 
and  standing  over  him  as  it  were  and  above  him,  went  on. 

"Who  are  these  people  you  call  Confederates?  Eebels,  unless  they 
succeed,  outcasts,  trJ*ors,  food  for  hemp  and  gunpowder.  There  were  no 
great  statesmen  in  the  South,  or  this  war  would  have  happened  ten  years 
ago;  no  inspired  men,  or  it  would  have  happened  fifteen  years  ago.  Today 
the  odds  are  desperate.  The  world  hates  slavery;  the  world  is  fighting  you. 
The  ocean  belongs  to  the  Union  navy.  There  is  a  recruiting  officer  in  every 
foreign  port.  I  have  captured  and  killed  many  who  did  not  know  the 
English  tongue.  Mile  by  mile  the  cordon  is  being  drawn  about  the 
granaries  of  the  South,  Missouri  will  go  first,  next  Kentucky,  next  Tennes- 
see, by  and  by  Mississippi  and  Arkansas,  and  then  what?  That  we  must 


280          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Quantrill's  men,  or  a  part  of  them,  were  in  the  campaigns  in 
Northwestern  Arkansas  and  Southwestern  Missouri  during  the 
winter  of  1862-63.  They  were  in  the  battles  of  Cane  Hill, 
Prairie  Grove,  Springfield,  and  Hartville.  Todd,  however,  was 
not  pleased  with  regular  warfare.  He  deserted  two  hours  before 
the  battle  of  Cane  Hill  began,  and,  with  seven  other  desperate 
guerrillas,  returned  to  Missouri.  A  fair  field  and  honorable  bat- 
tle did  not  suit  him.  The  opportunities  for  murder  and  plunder 
were  not  sufficient  to  attract  him.  And  we  shall  see  that  Todd 


put  gloves  on  our  hands,  and  honey  in  our  mouths,  and  fight  this  war  as 
Christ  fought  the  wickedness  of  the  world?" 

The  War  Secretary  did  not  speak.  Quantrell,  perhaps,  did  not  desire 
that  he  should.  "You  ask  an  impossible  thing,  Mr.  Secretary.  This 
secession,  or  revolution,  or  whatever  you  call  it  cannot  conquer  without 
violence,  nor  can  those  who  hate  it  and  hope  to  stifle  it,  resist  without 
vindictiveness.  Every  struggle  has  its  philosophy,  but  this  is  not  the 
hour  for  philosophers.  Your  young  Confederacy  wants  victory,  and  champ- 
ions who  are  not  judges.  Men  must  be  killed.  To  impel  the  people  to 
passion  there  must  be  some  slight  illusion  mingled  with  the  truth;  to  arouse 
them  to  enthusiasm  something  out  of  nature  must  occur.  That  illusion 
should  be  a  crusade  in  the  name  of  conquest,  and  that  something  out  of 
nature  should  be  the  black  flag.  Woe  be  unto  all  of  you  if  the  Federals 
come  with  an  oath  of  loyalty  in  one  hand  and  a  torch  in  the  other.  I 
have  seen  Missouri  bound  hand  and  foot  by  this  Christless  thing  called 
Conservatisnij  and  where  to-day  she  should  have  two  hundred  thousand 
heroes  fighting  for  liberty,  beneath  her  banners  there  are  scarcely  twenty 
thousand. ' '' 

"What  would  you  do,  Captain  Quantrell,  were  your's  the  power  and 
the  opportunity?" 

"Do,  Mr.  Secretary?  Why  I  would  wage  such  a  war  and  have  such 
a  war  waged  by  land  and  sea  as  to  make  surrender  forever  impossible.  I 
would  cover  the  armies  of  the  Confederacy  all  over  with  blood.  I  would 
invade.  I  would  reward  audacity.  I  would  exterminate.  I  would  break 
up  foreign  enlistments  by  indiscriminate  massacre.  I  would  win  the 
independence  of  my  people  or  I  would  find  them  graves." 

"And  our  prisoners,  what  of  them?" 

"Nothing  of  them;  there  would  be  no  prisoners.  Do  they  take  any 
prisoners  from  me?  Surrounded,  I  do  not  surrender;  surprised,  I  do  not 
give  way  to  panic;  outnumbered,  I  rely  upon  common  sense  and  stubborn 
fighting;  proscribed,  I  answer  proclamation  with  proclamation;  outlawed, 
I  feel  through  it  my  power;  hunted,  I  hunt  my  hunters  in  turn;  hated  and 
made  blacker  than  a  dozen  devils,  I  add  to  my  hoofs  the  swiftness  of  the 
horse,  and  to  my  horns  the  terrors  of  a  savage  following.  Kansas  should 
be  laid  waste  at  once.  Meet  the  torch  with  the  torch,  pillage  with 
pillage,  slaughter  with  slaughter,  subjugation  with  extermination.  You 
have  my  ideas  of  war,  Mr.  Secretary,  and  I  am  sorry  they  do  not  accord 
with  your  own,  nor  the  ideas  of  the  government  you  have  the  honor  to 
represent  so  well."  And  Quantrell,  without  his  commission  as  a  Partisan 
Hanger,  or  without  any  authorization  to  raise  a  regiment  of  Partisan 
Bangers,  bowed  himself  away  from  the  presence  of  the  Secretary  and  away 
from  Eichmond. 


| 

' 


QUANTRILL  GOES  TO  RICHMOND,  VIRGINIA     281 

was  even  then  a  rising  star,  keenly  jealous  of  Quantrill,  and  that 
he  finally  usurped  the  prestige  and  power  of  the  guerrilla  chief- 
tain and  drove  him  out  of  the  service.     QuantrilPs  fear  of  the> 
growing  power  of  Todd  was  one  reason  why  he  sought  more^ 
power  and  authority  in  Richmond. 

After  the  battle  of  Hartville  the  command  of  Quantrill  was 
still  further  depleted.  General  John  S.  Marmaduke  sent  Gregg, 
John  Ross,  John  Koger,  and  Bennett  Wood  to  Missouri  to  recruit 
men  for  his  command.  They  arrived  in  Jackson  county,  Janu- 
ary 19,  1863,  having  marched  more  than  two  hundred  miles 
over  rough  roads  and  in  a  strange  country.  Gregg  captured 
and  paroled  nearly  two  hundred  militia  on  the  trip.  "When  he 
turned  over  the  command  of  the  guerrillas  to  Lieutenant  Scott 
to  go  to  Missouri  there  were  but  twenty-five  men  in  it. 

Quantrill  returned  from  Richmond  through  Mississippi.  He 
stopped  two  or  three  days  at  the  camp  of  some  Missouri  troops 
on  Black  River  twelve  miles  east  of  Vicksburg.2  He  arrived  at 
the  camp  of  his  followers  much  crestfallen  and  discouraged.  He 
was  ambitious.  Through  his  distorted  vision  he  saw  promotions 
in  store  for  him  and  honors  heaped  upon  him.  He  believed  he 
had  earned  them,  and  well  earned  them.  But  he  had  found  the 
world  larger  than  he  believed  it,  and  he  was  surprised  and  vexed 
to  find  that  the  eyes  of  the  whole  Confederacy  were  not  fixed 
upon  him  and  his  achievements.  He  pined  to  be  a  hero,  and  was 
hurt  to  think  he  was  not  so  regarded.  He  had  not  been  wined 
and  dined  in  Richmond.  His  discouragement  was  augmented 
when  he  saw  the  dilapidated  condition  of  his  band,  the  mere 
skeleton  which  remained  of  it.  He  carried  his  woe  to  General 
Sterling  Price,  who  cheered  him  up  as  best  he  could.  General 
Price  promised  him  great  things  and  insisted  that  he  stop  his 
bushwhacking  and  horse-stealing,  insisting  that  there  was  yet 
time  and  chance  for  promotion.  Indeed,  Price  may  have  given 
him  the  colonel's  commission,  for  this  was  a  common  procedure 
in  the  Confederate  service  west  of  the  Mississippi.  And  Pricp 
had  fared  little  better  at  the  hands  of  the  Richmond  officials 


2  Told  the  author  by  T.  C.  Caldwell,  Esq.,  of  Independence,  Mo., 
May  15,  1906.  Mr.  Caldwell  saw  Quantrill  at  the  camp  on  Black  Eiver, 
but  does  not  recall  that  any  one  was  traveling  with  him. 


282          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BOEDER  WARS 

than  had  Quantrill.  President  Davis  held  General  Price  in 
supreme  contempt.3  With  his  men  Quantrill  put  on  a  bold  face 
for  a  short  time  and  talked  of  regular  warfare.  This  was  the 
worst  possible  course  he  could  have  taken  with  his  men,  especially 
with  his  officers.  They  in  a  manner  deserted  him  and  formed 
bands  of  their  own.  Each  of  these  bands  operated  independently 
of  all  the  others.  Quantrill  was  recognized  as  a  sort  of  head 
officer,  and  the  lesser  chieftains  paid  him  a  sort  of  homage  and 
co-operated  with  him  in  the  guerrilla  warfare  he  engaged  in 
during  the  summer  of  1863.4 

Quantrill's  captains  were  very  busy  during  the  summer  of 
1863,  but  Quantrill  himself  did  little  except  to  plan  and  execute 
the  Lawrence  raid.  He  fell  again  into  despondency,  to  alleviate 
which  he  had  recourse  to  his  favorite  dissipation.  He  kidnapped 
a  girl  named  Kate  Clarke  and  made  her  his  mistress,  and  he  spent 
most  of  his  time  with  her  in  the  brush.s 

3  See  The  Battle  of  Westport,  by  Paul  B.  Jenkins,  pp.  22,  23. 

4  The  arrangement  between  Quantrill  and  General  Price  is  fully  set 
out  in  Rebellion  Records,  Series  I,  Vol.  XXIII,  p.  320,  Report  of  Walter 
King,  Lieutenant-Colonel,  Fourth  Missouri  State  Militia  Cavalry,  dated,  Lex- 
ington, Mo.,  May  5,  1863.     It  is  as  follows: 

An  hour  has  elapsed  since  penning  the  foregoing  paragraph,  spent  in 
interview  with  "John  DeCourcy, "  my  most  trusted  spy,  who  reached  here, 
and  I  gather  the  following:  Quantrill  is  here;  he  came  from  Price  to 
conscript;  he  came  with  40  men;  he  has  joined  Reid's,  Jarrett's,  Todd'i, 
Younger 's,  and  Clifton's  gangs  to  his  own,  which  give  him  from  125  to 
150  men ;  he  disbanded  his  force  on  Sunday  night,  with  orders  to  rendezvous 
on  Thursday  night  on  the  Big  Sni,  precise  place  not  definitely  learned; 
has  orders  from  Price  to  stop  bushwhacking  and  horse  stealing.  Price  is 
to  invade  Southeast  Missouri,  and  Quantrill  is  to  annoy  Kansas  and  Wes- 
tern Missouri;  intends  to  conscript  all  of  military  age;  has  secret  notice 
among  Southern  men  to  come  to  his  camp  and  get  property  taken  by 
mistake;  came  here  to  stay,  not  to  take  away  any  recruits;  seems  to  be 
rather  elevated  in  his  purposes  by  his  six  or  eight  months'  experience  with 
the  regular  forces. 

s  Letter  of  Charles  F.  Taylor  ("Fletch"  Taylor)  to  W.  W.  Scott, 
now  in  the  Collection  of  the  author.  Taylor  wrote  very  interesting  letters. 
He  saw  deeper  into  Quantrill  and  his  motives  than  any  of  his  men.  Quan- 
trill took  this  Kate  Clarke  to  Howard  county  with  him  in  the  summer  of 
1864  and  did  almost  no  fighting.  Nothing  of  the  parentage  of  Kate 
Clarke  has  been  learned.  Quantrill  became  much  attached  to  her,  and  at 
his  death  left  her  two  thousand  dollars  in  gold,  with  which  she  established 
a  house  of  ill  fame  in  St.  Louis.  This  house  became  notorious.  Scott 
wrote  the  Clarke  woman  there,  but  his  letter  was  returned  and  is  now  in  the 
Collection  of  the  author.  Scott  must  have  been  informed  that  QuantriU 


QUANTRILL  GOES  TO  RICHMOND,  VIRGINIA     283 

The  rumors  and  flying  reports  of  the  great  activity  of  Quan- 
trill  in  the  summer  of  1863  were  rumors  only.  The  activity  and 
actions  of  all  his  captains  were  laid  at  his  door.  The  Rebellion  \ 
Records  have  little  to  say  about  that  summer,  and  the  Gregg 
Manuscript  contains  accounts  of  the  movements  of  the  captains 
only  during  that  period.  He  was  nominally  in  command  and 
the  captains  yielded  him  certain  allegiance,  but  the  guerrilla 
deeds  that  summer  up  to  the  Lawrence  raid  were  principally 
their  deeds,  and  they  will  appear  in  the  notices  of  the  captains 
respectively.  It  is  not  meant  to  say  here  that  he  did  nothing 
in  the  summer  of  1863.  He  did  much,  but  nothing  to  compare 
with  what  he  did  in  the  summer  of  1862.  He  still  had  much  in- 
fluence over  all  the  guerrillas,  and  he  realized  that  his  power  was 
waning  long  before  his  men  thought  of  that  matter. 

had  married  Kate  Clarke,  for  he  asked  her  that  question  in  the  letter. 
Extracts  from  the  letters  of  Taylor  are  given  here: 

Q.  was  a  good  commander  and  a  brave  man  and  all  the  men  had 
confidence  in  him.  Don't  think  he  was  cowardly,  although  I  never  saw  him 
in  a  close  place,  as  the  men  preferred  to  go  in  the  lead,  and  let  him  manage, 
as  we  did  not  wish  to  lose  him. 

He  took  Kate  Clarke  in  the  summer  of  1863,  and  she  went  willingly, 
as  he  borrowed  my  Gray  mare  for  her  to  ride  on  to  a  place  some  five 
miles  from  camp.  I  don't  know  whether  Walker  gave  him  anything  or 
not,  but  his  girl  was  Quantrill's  mistress  for  some  time  after  I  joined; 
she  has  since  married  a  man  by  name  of  Woods. 

Others  say  he  kidnapped  this  girl  and  that  it  took  her  some  time  to 
become  reconciled  to  the  life  to  which  he  doomed  her,  but  that  she  became 
infatuated  with  him,  even  wearing  a  man's  clothing  and  riding  in  the 
ranks  to  be  near  him. 


CHAPTER  XXIII 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE 
I. 

THE  genesis  of  the  Lawrence  Massacre  lies  back  seven 
years.    The  roots  of  this  bloody  and  inhuman  deed  were 
sunk  deep  in  the  political  compost  of  the  affairs  of  Terri- 
torial Kansas  and  Missouri  border-ruffianism.     It  was  the  con- 
summation of  the  unrelenting  purpose  of  the  spirit  of  slavery 
which  ran  riot  along  the  border  in  1856.    There  were  subsequent 
causes,  to  be  sure,  but  they  were  subordinate  and  local.1 

Lawrence  was  founded  in  the  spirit  of  human  liberty.  It 
had  its  inception  in  the  idea  that  slavery  should  not  be  one  of  the 
institutions  of  Kansas.  When  the  Emigrant  Aid  Company  made 
the  town  its  headquarters  in  Kansas  the  forces  of  slavery  on  the 
border  decreed  its  destruction.  This  Emigrant  Aid  Company 
caused  deeper  and  more  lasting  bitterness  in  Missouri  than  all 
other  incidents  in  the  history  of  Kansas.  Nothing  else  so  en- 
raged the  South.  And  Lawrence  was  the  town  of  the  "Aid 
Company."  It  stood  as  the  embodiment  of  the  anti-slavery 
sentiment  of  the  North  —  abolitionism,  if  you  will  —  final  de- 

i  Other  raids  were  for  plunder,  the  Lawrence  raid  was  for  slaughter. 
That  some  of  the  raiders  should  assign  retaliation  as  the  motive  was  to 
be  expected.  It  was  the  nearest  motive  at  hand  and  made  a  plausible 
excuse.  That  some  of  the  raiders  had  suffered  personal  wrongs  and  were 
inspired  with  feelings  of  revenge,  we  can  well  believe.  But  this  could 
not  have  been  the  inspiration  of  the  attack,  nor  the  cause  of  its  excessive 
brutality.  These  things  show  that  it  had  its  roots  deeper  than  this.  Its 
roots  ran  back  into  the  old  pro-slavery  hate  of  six  years  before.  .  .  . 
Its  inspiration  and  its  venom  flowed  from  the  same  source  and  sentiments 
whence  the  earlier  invasions  came.  It  sprang  from  the  same  sentiment 
which  had  three  times  before  assailed  Lawrence  and  been  foiled.  .  .  . 
The  movement  sprang  from  the  same  soil  which  produced  the  Wakarusa 
War  and  the  troubles  of  1856.  It  was  the  same  conflict  on  a  larger  scale. 
The  same  principles  were  at  stake,  and  the  same  parties  confronted  each 
other.  The  same  feelings  inspired  either  side.  The  same  hate  sought  to 
gratify  itself  under  the  new  conditions. 

The  border  ruffians  of  1856  became  the  bushwhackers  of  1863.  —  Dr. 
Richard  Cordley,  in  his  History  of  Lawrence,  pp.  196,  197. 


THE   LAWRENCE   MASSACRE  285 

struction  of  the  institution  of  slavery.  Perhaps  some  of  the 
founders  of  Lawrence  repudiated  the  term  "  abolitionist,"  but 
it  was  well  understood  in  all  quarters  that  if  slavery  was  defeated/ 
in  Kansas  it  could  not  survive  in  the  Union.  The  man  who 
claimed  that  he  was  simply  anti-slavery  and  not  an  abolitionist 
insisted  upon  a  distinction  without  a  difference.  The  man  who 
labored  to  make  Kansas  a  free  State  labored  for  national  aboli- 
tionism whether  he  admitted  it  or  not.  This  was  perfectly  under- 
stood in  the  South,  and  a  careful  study  of  the  debates  in  the 
Congressional  sessions  of  those  times  will  clearly  show  that  it 
was  equally  well  understood  in  the  North.  The  repeal  of  the 
Missouri  Compromise  had  made  any  other  interpretation  of  the 
Kansas  strugle  impossible.  The  Missourian  believed  that  in 
fighting  Lawrence  he  was  battling  against  national  abolitionism, 
and  that  in  her  destruction  the  evil  day  for  his  favorite  institu- 
tion might  be  postponed,  if  even  complete  victory  should  not  be 
attained.  To  him  Lawrence  was  Kansas,  and  he  sought  every 
means  to  destroy  it  in  the  interest  of  the  government  and  civil- 
ization he  was  trying  to  establish  there.  It  became  the  object  of 
deep  and  bitter  hatred  in  Missouri,  and,  while  in  1863  no  one 
there  was  so  mad  as  to  believe  its  destruction  could  have  any  in- 
fluence on  the  result  of  the  war,  there  lingered  in  the  mind  of 
every  secessionist  and  every  Confederate  in  Missouri  a  malignant 
hatred  of  Lawrence.  And  it  remained  for  Quantrill,  a  man  who 
cared  nothing  for  slavery  as  an  institution,  nothing  for  the  ab- 
olition of  slavery,  nothing  for  the  North,  nothing  for  the  South, 
to  seize  upon  this  feeling  and  make  it  a  means  to  gratify  his 
thirst  for  blood  and  greed  for  spoil  and  plunder. 

In  enumerating  some  of  the  instances  showing  the  results  of 
this  feeling  in  Missouri  in  the  Territorial  days  of  Kansas  the 
author  again  disclaims  all  desire  to  revive  bitterness  between 
sister  States.  Kansas  has  her  history,  and  that  history  cannot  be 
spoken  of  without  mention  of  the  various  incidents  of  it ;  and  as 
Missouri  assumed  the  right  to  make  Kansas  history  and  shape 
Kansas  institutions,  many  of  her  people  were  parties  to  these 
incidents.  In  Kansas  there  has  been  no  feeling  on  this  matter 
for  forty  years.  And  it  is  believed  there  is  none  in  Missouri. 
These  two  States  are  more  closely  identified  in  business  matters 


286          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

and  all  material  interests  than  any  other  two  States  in  the  Union. 
Goodfellowship  is  universal,  and  recounting  historical  facts 
which  occurred  in  other  times  under  conditions  which  all  rejoice 
to  know  are  gone  never  to  return  should  not  be  taken  as  any  de- 
sire to  disturb  it.  To  a  proper  understanding  of  the  conditions 
in  Western  Missouri  which  made  the  Lawrence  Massacre  possible 
it  is  necessary  that  these  times  be  reviewed. 

When  Kansas  was  made  a  Territory  the  slave-party  was  in 
power  at  Washington,  and  the  Washington  government  stood 
behind  all  the  acts  of  the  border-ruffians  in  Kansas.  The  in- 
vasions of  Kansas  were  upheld  there  and  even  applauded.  To 
carry  the  first  election  in  Kansas,  Missourians  came  over  by 
hundreds  and  by  thousands.  They  took  possession  of  the  polls, 
thrust  aside  the  lawful  judges  at  the  muzzle  of  the  revolver, 
voted,  certified  to  the  accuracy  and  legality  of  the  poll-books, 
packed  them  up  and  carried  them  away.  These  actions  were 
performed  by  direction  of  the  leading  men  of  the  border  counties. 
General  David  R.  Atchison,  long  United  States  Senator  from 
Missouri,  was  the  chief  mover  in  the  matter.  He  was  at  the 
bottom  of  all  the  agitation.  William  C.  Price,  of  Springfield, 
Mo.,  once  told  the  author  that  Atchison  acted  at  his  suggestion, 
and  that  he  himself  represented  in  Missouri  the  ultra-wing  of  the 
slave  power. 

For  condemning  the  people  of  Missouri  for  going  to  Kansas 
to  vote,  the  Luminary,  published  at  Parkville,  Mo.,  was  destroyed 
and  the  presses  and  type  thrown  into  the  Missouri  river.  This 
act  was  approved  in  all  the  border  counties  by  public  assemblies. 
The  mob  held  a  meeting  at  the  conclusion  of  its  work  and  de- 
cided to  reassemble  at  the  same  place  in  three  weeks.  It  adopted 
the  following  resolution  touching  the  proprietors  of  the  paper: 
"And  if  we  find  G.  S.  Parks  or  W.  J.  Patterson  in  this  town 
then  or  at  any  subsequent  time,  we  will  throw  them  into  the 
Missouri  River,  and  if  they  go  to  Kansas  to  reside,  we  pledge 
our  honor  as  men  to  follow  and  hang  them  whenever  we  can  take 
them." 

William  A.  Phillips,  a  lawyer  at  Leavenworth,  favored  the 
Free-State  cause  in  Kansas.  For  this  he  was  kidnapped,  carried 
to  Weston,  Mo.,  where  one  side  of  his  head  was  shaved;  he  was 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  287 

tarred,  feathered,  and  ridden  on  a  rail  about  two  miles,  and  then 
sold  at  auction  for  one  dollar,  a  negro  slave  being  forced  to  cry 
him  off  to  the  highest  bidder. 

On  the  25th  of  October,  1855,  Charles  W.  Dow,  a  Free-State 
settler  in  Douglas  county,  was  murdered  by  Franklin  N.  Cole- 
man,  a  pro-slavery  settler.  Out  of  this  murder  grew  the  Wak- 
arusa  War.  Fifteen  hundred  Missourians  gathered  at  Franklin, 
about  four  miles  east  of  Lawrence,  for  the  avowed  purpose  of 
destroying  the  town.  A  treaty  of  peace  was  signed  by  Lane, 
Robinson,  and  Governor  Shannon,  and  this  turned  the  Missouri- 
ans homeward,  but  they  plundered  Free-State  settlers  wherever 
found.  During  this  war  Thomas  W.  Barber,  a  Free-State  set- 
tler, was  shot  and  killed  in  cold  blood  by  either  George  W.  Clark 
or  James  N.  Burnes,  border  ruffians. 

In  May,  1856,  the  Herald  of  Freedom  and  the  Kansas  Free- 
State,  newspapers,  and  the  Eldridge  House,  all  at  Lawrence, 
were  decreed  nuisances  by  the  Federal  grand  jury  and  ordered 
abated.  Acting  under  this  authority,  General  Atchison  gathered 
about  six  hundred  Missourians  and  invaded  Kansas.  Lawrence 
was  sacked.  The  newspapers  and  the  Eldridge  House  were 
destroyed.  The  people  were  driven  from  their  homes  and  the 
stores  and  dwellings  pillaged.  The  dwelling  of  Governor  Robin- 
son was  burned.  In  his  exultation  General  Atchison  made  a 
speech  to  his  men  as  they  began  their  work  in  which  he  said : 

Boys,  this  day  I  am  a  Kickapoo  Ranger,  by  God.  This  day 
we  have  entered  Lawrence,  " Southern  Rights"  inscribed  on  our 
banners,  and  not  one  damned  abolitionist  has  dared  to  fire  a  gun. 
No,  by  God,  not  one !  This,  boys,  is  the  happiest  day  of  my  whole 
life.  We  have  entered  the  damned  city,  and  to-night  the  aboli- 
tionists will  learn  a  Southern  lesson  that  they  will  remember  to 
the  day  of  their  death.  And  now,  boys,  we  will  go  in  with  our 
highly  honorable  Jones,  and  test  the  strength  of  that  damned 
Free-State  Hotel,  and  learn  the  Emigrant  Aid  Society  that  Kan- 
sas shall  be  ours.  Boys,  ladies  should  be,  and  I  trust  will  be, 
respected  by  all  gentlemen;  but,  by  God,  when  a  woman  takes 
on  herself  the  garb  of  a  soldier  by  carrying  a  Sharps 's  rifle,  then 
she  is  no  longer  a  woman,  and,  by  God,  treat  her  for  what  you 
find  her,  and  trample  her  underfoot  as  you  would  a  snake.  By 
God,  come  on  boys !  Now  to  your  duties  to  yourselves  and  your 
Southern  friends !  Your  duty  I  know  you  will  do ;  and  if  a  man 


288          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

or  woman  dare  to  stand  before  you,  blow  them  to  hell  with  a 
chunk  of  cold  lead ! 

A  few  days  later  John  Brown  and  a  party  slew  five  pro- 
slavery  men  on  Pottawatomie  creek.  These  men  had  terrified 
the  Free-State  settlers,  ordered  them  to  leave  the  Territory,  and 
had  insulted  their  wives  and  daughters ;  it  had  come  to  the  point 
where  one  party  or  the  other  had  to  leave  the  country  or  fight. 
John  Brown  chose  to  fight.  General  Jo  0.  Shelby,  a  few  weeks 
before  his  death,  told  the  author  that  John  Brown  was  the  only 
Free-State  man  with  the  true  conception  of  the  conditions  which 
prevailed  at  the  time,  saying: 

"I  was  in  Kansas  at  the  head  of  an  armed  force  about  that 
time.  I  was  there  to  kill  Free-State  men.  I  did  kill  them.  I  am 
now  ashamed  of  myself  for  having  done  so,  but  then  times  were 
different  from  what  they  are  now,  and  that  is  what  I  went  there 
for.  We  Missourians  all  went  there  for  that  purpose  if  it  should 
be  found  necessary  to  do  so  to  carry  out  our  designs.  I  had  no 
business  there.  No  Missourian  had  any  business  there  with  arms 
in  his  hands.  The  policy  that  sent  us  there  was  damnable,  and 
the  trouble  we  started  on  the  border  bore  fruit  for  ten  years.  I 
ought  to  have  been  shot  there,  and  John  Brown  was  the  only 
man  who  knew  it  and  would  have  done  it.  I  say  John  Brown  was 
right.  I  knew  the  men  he  killed.  I  condemn  his  killing  of  the 
younger  Doyles,  but  the  others  got  only  what  they  deserved. 
After  that  I  had  great  respect  for  Old  John  Brown.  He  did  in 
his  country  what  I  should  have  done  in  mine  under  like  circum- 
stances. Those  were  days  when  slavery  was  in  the  balance,  and 
the  violence  engendered  made  men  irresponsible.  I  now  see  I 
was  so  myself."  Brave  words  from  one  of  the  bravest  men  and 
best  soldiers  that  ever  shouldered  a  musket  in  America!  Only 
a  brave  man  —  and  great  man  —  can  bring  himself  to  make  such 
a  confession.2 

2  In  the  last  years  of  his  life  General  Shelby  was  United  States 
Marshal  for  the  western  district  of  Missouri.  His  office  was  at  Kansas 
City.  This  was  during  the  last  administration  of  Grover  Cleveland.  Gen- 
eral Shelby  died  while  yet  in  office. 

General  Shelby  was  a  Kentuckian,  as  I  am.  I  lived  then  in  Kansas 
City,  Kansas,  and  I  often  visited  him  at  his  office  to  talk  over  olden  times 
and  historical  events.  We  often  discussed  the  Territorial  times  of  Kansas 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  289 

John  Brown  fell  upon  a  band  of  some  thirty  ruffians  at 
Black  Jack,  near  the  present  town  of  Baldwin,  in  Douglas  county. 
He  had  less  than  a  dozen  men,  but  he  captured  the  Missourians. 
In  this  battle  there  was  a  young  Missourian  named  Jacob  Cantrel 
who  fought  under  John  Brown,  or  who  rendered  him  signal  aid 
and  service.  He  had  the  misfortune  to  be  captured  by  a  band 
of  his  countrymen  a  few  days  later.  As  these  were  returning 
home  they  camped  one  night  on  Cedar  creek,  west  of  Olathe. 
There  they  tried  Cantrel  for  "treason  to  Missouri,"  convicted 
him,  and  led  him  out  of  camp  and  shot  him  to  death. 

The  demoralization  was  terrible.  An  act  committed  at 
Leavenworth  confirms  this.  It  is  described  by  Dr.  John  H. 
Gihon,  private  secretary  to  Governor  Geary,  in  his  splendid 
work,  Geary  and  Kansas: 

On  the  17th,  a  shocking  affair  occurred  in  the  neighborhood 
of  Leavenworth.  Two  ruffians  sat  at  a  table  in  a  low  groggery, 
imbibing  potations  of  bad  whiskey.  One  of  them,  named  Fugert, 
belonging  to  Atchison's  band,  bet  his  companion  six  dollars 
against  a  pair  of  boots,  that  he  would  go  out,  and  in  less  than 
two  hours  bring  in  the  scalp  of  an  abolitionist.  He  went  into  the 
road,  and  meeting  a  Mr.  Hoppe,  who  was  in  his  carriage  just 

and  the  border  troubles.  General  Shelby  always  denounced  Quantrill 
in  the,  severest  terms.  He  had  outlived  and  outgrown  the  bitterness  of 
border  times.  He  was  a  very  just,  earnest,  sincere  man.  He  told  me 
without  reserve  of  the  raids  he  had  made  into  Kansas  during  the  troubles 
in  Kansas  Territorial  days.  He  repented  his  actions  and  reproached  himself 
that  he  had  ever  done  these  things.  He  said  he  was  wrong,  that  he  had 
no  business  in  Kansas  on  any  guch  errands,  that  the  policy  of  the  South 
which  sent  him  there  was  damnable,  that  John  Brown  was  the  only  Kansas 
man  who  had  the  right  idea  of  the  conditions  existing  there  and  the  only 
man  who  had  the  courage  to  resist  Missourians  at  the  muzzle  of  the  rifle. 
He  believed  John  Brown  was  right.  I  have  heard  General  Shelby  gay 
more  than  once  that  Virginia  would  some  day  erect  a  great  monument  to 
John  Brown.  He  was  an  admirer  of  John  Brown  and  often  said  that 
Brown  was  the  bravest  man  who  ever  stood  upon  a  scaffold.  He  said 
Brown  would  have  shot  him  had  he  found  him  harrowing  Kansas  settlers, 
and  that  it  would  have  been  just  and  right.  That  in  so  doing  Brown 
would  have  done  no  more  in  Kansas  than  he,  Shelby,  would  have  done  in 
Missouri. 

The  words  in  the  text  are  as  nearly  what  General  Shelby  said  as  I 
could  write  them  after  our  interview.     He  expressed  the  sentiments  of  the 
text  to  me  many  times. 
19 


290          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

returning  to  Leaven  worth  from  a  visit  to  Lawrence,  where  he 
had  conveyed  his  wife,  Fugert  deliberately  shot  him ;  then  taking 
out  his  bowie-knife  whilst  his  victim  was  still  alive,  he  cut  and 
tore  off  the  scalp  from  his  quivering  head.  Leaving  the  body  of 
Hoppe  lying  in  the  road,  he  elevated  his  bloody  trophy  upon  a 
pole,  and  paraded  it  through  the  streets  of  Leavenworth,  amid 
the  shouts  of  the  "law  and  order"  militia,  and  the  plaudits  of 
some  who  are  denominated  the  noblest  specimens  of  "southern 
chivalry,"  and  regarded  as  men  of  respectability.  On  the  same 
day  a  teamster,  who  was  approaching  Leavenworth,  was  mur- 
dered and  scalped  by  another  human  monster. 

A  poor  German,  when  the  scalp  of  Hoppe  was  brought  into 
Leavenworth,  was  imprudent  enough  to  express  his  horror  of 
the  shocking  deed,  when  he  was  ordered  to  run  for  his  life,  in 
attempting  which  a  number  of  bullets  sped  after  him,  and  he 
fell  dead  in  the  street.  The  pro-slavery  men  aided  Fugert  to 
escape  from  the  territory  by  sending  him  down  the  river,  and 
furnishing  him  with  money.  He  wore,  upon  his  departure,  the 
boots  he  so  nobly  won. 

Quoting  still  further  from  Dr.  Gihon,  it  will  be  seen  that 
robbery  was  one  of  the  objects  of  Missourians  in  the  invasion  of 
Kansas : 

On  the  7th,  Reid,  with  one  hundred  and  seventy  men, 
inarched  into  Osawatomie,  and  without  resistance,  entered  each 
house,  robbing  it  of  everything  of  value.  There  were  but  few 
men  in  the  town,  and  the  women  and  children  were  treated  with 
the  utmost  brutality.  Stores  and  dwellings  were  alike  entered 
and  pillaged.  Trunks,  boxes,  and  desks  were  broken  open,  and 
their  contents  appropriated  or  destroyed.  Even  rings  were  rudely 
pulled  from  the  ears  and  fingers  of  the  women,  and  some  of  the 
apparel  from  their  persons.  The  liquor  found  was  freely  drunk, 
and  served  to  incite  the  plunderers  to  increased  violence  in  the 
prosecution  of  their  mischevous  work.  Having  completely 
stripped  the  town,  they  set  fire  to  several  houses,  then  beat  a 
rapid  retreat,  carrying  off  a  number  of  horses,  and  loudly  urging 

each  other  to  greater  haste,  as  "the  d d  abolitionists  were 

coming ! ' ' 

This  was  Captain  John  W.  Reid,  who,  under  Colonel  Doni- 
phan,  had  done  so  nobly  at  the  battle  of  Sacramento.  Under  the 
demoralization  brought  on  by  the  battle  in  Kansas  for  slavery  he 
degenerated  into  a  robber  and  murderer.  He  returned  later  to 
Osawatomie  and  killed  several  men  and  burned  the  town. 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  291 

Thomas  H.  Gladstone,  correspondent  for  the  London  Times, 
visited  Kansas  in  1856.  At  Kansas  City  he  met  the  border-ruf- 
fians returning  from  the  sacking  of  Lawrence.  They  were  loaded 
with  property  stolen  at  Lawrence,  the  value  of  which  he  fixed  at 
one  hundred  and  fifty  thousand  dollars.  He  was  a  shorthand 
writer  and  noted  down  the  conversation  of  some  of  the  leaders, 
extracts  from  which  are  quoted  here: 

The  day  following  the  attack  upon  Lawrence  being  that  of 
my  own  arrival  in  the  territory,  I  am  able  to  supply  its  later 
history  from  personal  observation,  and  will  endeavor  to  illustrate 
the  condition  of  Kansas  at  that  excited  time  by  the  narrative  of 
things  seen  and  heard  during  the  period  of  my  visit. 

The  border-ruffian  forces  employed  in  the  siege  and  sack  of 
Lawrence,  being  disbanded,  were  to  be  seen  on  the  following  day 
spreading  over  the  roads  towards  the  east,  carrying  fury  and 
violence  wherever  they  went.  Having  once  been  taught  that 
robbery  and  outrage,  if  committed  in  the  service  of  the  South, 
were  to  be  regarded  as  deeds  of  loyalty  and  obedience,  these 
ministers  of  a  self-styled  "law  and  order"  were  slow  to  unlearn 
a  doctrine  so  acceptable.  The  day,  like  the  preceding,  was  ex- 
tremely hot,  the  thermometer  standing  at  above  ninety  degrees; 
their  thirst  knew  no  bounds;  and  when  a  barrel  of  Bourbon,  or 
Monongahela,  or  Double  Rectified  was  accessible,  they  forgot 
even  in  some  instances  to  ask  the  politics  of  its  possessor.  Thus 
through  the  day  they  sustained  their  turbulent  fury,  and  when 
night  came,  it  found  them  prepared  for  any  excesses. 

It  was  on  that  night  that  I  first  came  in  contact  with  the 
Missourian  patriots.  I  had  just  arrived  in  Kansas  City,  and 
shall  never  forget  the  appearance  of  the  lawless  mob  that  poured 
into  the  place,  inflamed  with  drink,  glutted  with  the  indulgence 
of  the  vilest  passions,  displaying  with  loud  boasts  the  "plunder" 
they  had  taken  from  the  inhabitants,  and  thirsting  for  the  oppor- 
tunity of  repeating  the  sack  of  Lawrence  in  some  other  offend- 
ing place.  Men,  for  the  most  part  of  large  frame,  with  red 
flannel  shirts  and  immense  boots  worn  outside  their  trousers, 
their  faces  unwashed  and  unshaven,  still  reeking  with  the  dust 
and  smoke  of  Lawrence,  wearing  the  most  savage  looks,  and  giv- 
ing utterance  to  the  most  horrible  imprecations  and  blasphemies ; 
armed,  moreover,  to  the  teeth  with  rifles  and  revolvers,  cutlasses 
and  bowie-knives,  —  such  were  the  men  I  saw  around  me.  Some 
displayed  a  grotesque  intermixture  in  their  dress,  having  crossed 
their  native  red  rough  shirt  with  the  satin  vest  or  narrow  dress- 
coat  pillaged  from  the  wardrobe  of  some  Lawrence  Yankee,  or 
having  girded  themselves  with  the  cords  and  tassels  which  the 


292          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

day  before  had  ornamented  the  curtains  of  the  Free-State  Hotel. 
Looking  around  at  these  groups  of  drunken,  bellowing,  blood- 
thirsty demons,  who  crowded  around  the  bar  of  the  hotel,  shout- 
ing for  drink,  or  vented  their  furious  noise  on  the  levee  without, 
I  felt  that  all  my  former  experiences  of  border  men  and  Mis- 
sourians  bore  faint  comparison  with  the  spectacle  presented  by 
this  wretched  crew,  who  appeared  only  the  more  terrifying  from 
the  darkness  of  the  surrounding  night.  The  hotel  in  Kansas 
City  where  we  were,  was  the  next,  they  said,  that  should  fall; 
the  attack  was  being  planned  that  night,  and  such,  they  declared, 
should  be  the  end  of  every  place  which  was  built  by  Free-State 
men,  or  that  harbored  "those  rascally  abolitionists."  Happily 
this  threat  was  not  fulfilled. 

A  number  of  these  men  became  my  companions  for  the  night, 
as  I  went  up  by  one  of  the  Missouri  steamboats  from  Kansas  City 

to  Leavenworth A  general  rush  to  the  bar  ensued. 

Already  maddened  with  whiskey,  each  would  treat  his  fellow 
in  arms: — 

"Step  up,  and  liquor  here,  you  sir.  A  heap  finer  this  stuff 
than  that  there  rot-gut  ashore.  Here,  you  sir ;  don 't  be  askeared. 
One  of  our  boys,  I  reckon?  All  right  on  the  goose,  eh?  No 
high-falutin'  airs  here,  you  know.  Keep  that  for  them  Yankee 
Blue-Bellies  down  East.  If  there's  any  of  that  sort  here,  I  reckon 
they'd  better  make  tracks  mighty  quick,  and  that's  a  fact,  while 
I  'se  on  board,  unless  they  want  to  make  a  quicker  road  out  than 
they  came  in.  Yes,  sir,  this  yere  tool  of  mine  [handling  a  pis- 
tol], it  isn't  the  first  time  it  has  seen  a  Blue-belly.  If  there's  any 
of  that  'ere  sort  aboard,  I  say  the'd  better  clear  out,  that's  sar- 
tin.  We  ain't  agoin'  to  stand  them  coming  here,  we  ain't.  Isn't 
their  own  place  down  East  big  enough  for  them,  I  should  like 
to  know?  We  ain't  agoin'  to  stand  their  comin'  and  dictatin' 

to  us  with  their nigger-worshipping,  we  ain  't.  I  reckon 

we'll  make  the  place  hot  enough  for  them  soon,  that's  a  fact. 
Here,  boys,  drink.  Liquors,  captain,  for  the  crowd.  Step  up 
this  way,  old  hoss,  and  liquor." 

This  respectable  merchant  was  surrounded,  as  he  stood  in 
the  cabin  of  the  boat,  by  a  circle,  which  I  joined.  Out  of  a  side- 
pocket  protruded  the  head  of  a  pistol ;  in  his  hand  he  brandished 
another,  loaded,  as  he  told  us,  and  ready  for  action.  With 
threatening  aspect  and  attitude,  he  poured  forth,  amid  many 
oaths,  the  following  language  addressed  to  us  all: 

"I  am  bound  to  bring  down  some  one  before  I'm  done;  I 

tell  you,  by I  am.  I'll  teach  those  infernal  nigger-stealing 

Freesoilers  a  lesson  right  peartly,  that's  a  fact.  If  there's  a  dog- 
gauned  Abolitionist  aboard,  I  should  like  to  see  him,  that  I 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  293 

should.  I'm  the  man  to  put  a  chunk  o'  lead  into  his  woolly 
head,  right  off;  yes,  sir,  that's  what  I'll  do." 

Then  looking  around  at  each  of  us,  "I  reckon  I  can  raise 
the  top  off  the  head  of  ere  a  one  of  you  with  this  hyere  tool. 

Speak  the  word,  and,  by  ,  I'm  your  man.  That's  so.  I 

should  like  to  see  the  first  Freesoiler  that  opens  his  mouth ;  that 
I  should.  I'd  send  him  to  hell  pretty  quick,  afore  he  know'd 
what  he  was  about;  that's  what  I'd  do.  I'm  a  might  ce-urious 
customer,  I  am." 

And  so  thought,  probably,  one  of  his  hearers,  for  he  said 
to  the  curious  customer,  "Come,  old  hoss,  won't  you  have  some 
breakfast?"  The  old  horse  was  not  to  be  so  easily  diverted, 
however. 

"Breakfast!  think  I'd  be  after  breakfast  when  I've  got  my 
duty  before  me?  No,  sir,  exercise  is  the  thing  for  me  —  not 
eating.  I  tell  you  I'm  bound  to  drop  some  one  afore  I'm  done 
—  that  I  am.  I've  got  to  fight  for  the  liberties  of  my  country 
and  our  glorious  constitution,  and  rid  the  place  of  those  cowardly 
Blue-bellied  Yankees.  Yes,  sir,  that's  what  I've  got  to  do.  I 
should  like  to  know  what  they've  to  do  in  this  hyere  place,  with 
their  snarlin',  sneakin',  whittlin'-o'-nothin'  ways.  I  tell  you 
there's  not  a  man  amongst  them  as  knows  how  to  fight.  I  should 
like  to  see  the  first  one  as  '11  open  his  mouth  here,  —  that 's  what  I 
should  like  to  see.  I  tell  you  I'm  a  ce-urious  customer.  Yes, 
sir-ree ;  my  dog  knows  that, ' '  pointing  to  a  large  dog  that  seemed 
prepared  to  stand  by  his  master  for  better  or  worse.  Then,  "I 
should  like  to  sot  my  eyes  on  the  man  as  would  touch  that  'ere 
dog  of  mine,  i  'd  lay  him  dead  in  a  moment,  that  I  would.  Just 
see  me." 

None  of  us  felt  inclined  to  touch  the  dog,  and  the  respectable 
merchant  returned  to  his  politics  and  patriotism. 

"No  Northern  nigger-stealers  here.  I'll  fix  'em  up  mighty 
smart,  I  will.  I  ain't  here  for  nothing,  and  that  you'll  see,  just 
about  as  soon  as  anything.  Yes,  sir,  I  only  want  to  see  the  first 
Freesoiler  here.  I'll  drop  the  first  one  of  you  that  opens  his 
mouth  for  abolition  cusses;  I  be  dog-gauned  if  I  don't." 

Mr.  Gladstone  gives  us  the  language  of  but  one  of  the  ruf- 
fians. All  the  others  were  as  bad ;  there  was  but  one  spirit  actu- 
ating all  of  them.  There  was  then  promulgated  and  taught  as 
justice  and  righteousness  the  principle  that  governed  the  ruf- 
fians of  the  border  until  after  the  close  of  the  Civil  War.  Glad- 
stone thus  expressed  this  principle: 

"Having  once  been  taught  that  robbery  and  outrage,  if  com- 


294         QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

mitted  in  the  service  of  the  South,  were  to  be  regarded  as  deeds 
of  loyalty  and  obedience,  these  ministers  of  a  self-styled  'law  and 
order'  were  slow  to  unlearn  a  doctrine  so  acceptable." 

The  violence  of  those  times  is  now  inconceivable.  In  a 
speech  at  St.  Joseph,  March  26,  1855,  Benjamin  F.  Stringfellow 
said: 

I  tell  you  to  mark  every  scoundrel  among  you  that  is  in  the 
least  tainted  with  free-soilism  or  abolitionism  and  exterminate 
him.  Neither  give  nor  take  quarter  from  the  damned  rascals. 
I  propose  to  mark  them  in  this  house,  and  on  the  present  occasion, 
so  you  may  crush  them  out.  To  those  who  have  qualms  of  con- 
science as  to  violating  laws,  state  or  national,  the  crisis  has  ar- 
rived when  such  impositions  must  be  disregarded,  as  your  rights 
and  property  are  in  danger,  and  I  advise  one  and  all  to  enter 
every  election  district  in  Kansas,  in  defiance  of  Reeder  and  his 
vile  myrmidons,  and  vote  at  the  point  of  the  bowie-knife  and  the 
revolver.  Neither  give  nor  take  quarter,  as  our  cause  demands 
it.  It  is  enough  that  the  slaveholding  interest  wills  it,  from 
which  there  is  no  appeal.  What  right  has  Governor  Reeder  to 
rule  Missourians  in  Kansas?  His  proclamation  and  prescribed 
oath  must  be  prohibited.  It  is  to  your  interest  to  do  so.  Mind 
that  slavery  is  established  where  it  is  not  prohibited. 

Robert  S.  Kelly  was  a  typical  border-ruffian.  He  swore  he 
could  not  rest  or  die  happy  until  he  had  killed  an  abolitionist. 
"If,"  said  he,  "I  can't  kill  a  man,  I'll  kill  a  woman;  and  if  I 
can't  kill  a  woman,  I'll  kill  a  child." 

Dr.  Gihon  gives  us  a  general  description  of  the  times,  as 
follows : 

There  are  hundreds  of  well  authenticated  accounts  of  the 
cruelties  practiced  by  this  horde  of  ruffians,  some  of  them  too 
shocking  and  disgusting  to  relate,  or  to  be  accredited  if  told. 
The  tears  and  shrieks  of  terrified  women,  folded  in  their  foul 
embrace,  'failed  to  touch  a  chord  of  mercy  in  their  brutal  hearts, 
and  the  mutilated  bodies  of  murdered  men,  hanging  upon  the 
trees,  or  left  to  rot  upon  the  prairies  or  in  the  deep  ravines,  or 
furnish  food  for  vultures  and  wild  beasts,  told  frightful  stories 
of  brutal  ferocity  from  which  the  wildest  savages  might  have 
shrunk  with  horror. 

In  these  actions  and  conditions,  and  in  the  spirit  which  they 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  295 

made  the  code  of  justice  and  morality  along  the  border  the  Law- 
rence Massacre  had  its  origin. 

May  19,  1858,  Dr.  Hamelton  and  twenty-four  other  border- 
ruffians  planned  and  executed  an  indiscriminate  massacre  of 
Kansas  citizens.  This  is  known  as  the  Marais  des  Cygnes  Mas- 
sacre. They  arrested  eleven  citizens  of  Linn  county,  Kansas, 
marched  them  to  a  ravine,  formed  them  in  line  there,  and  fired 
until  every  man  fell.  The  murdered  numbered  five  and  the 
wounded  five.  One  escaped  unhurt ;  he  and  the  wounded  escaped 
by  feigning  death.  The  bodies  were  robbed  and  left  weltering 
in  their  blood,  and  the  murderers  returned  to  Missouri ;  they  were 
never  molested  or  called  to  account. 

The  burning  of  Osceola  by  General  James  H.  Lane  has  been 
generally  cited  by  Missouri  writers  as  a  justification  for  the 
Lawrence  Massacre  by  Quantrill.  On  this  subject  George  W. 
Martin,  Secretary  of  the  Kansas  State  Historical  Society,  said  in 
a  recent  address: 

James  H.  Lane,  in  command  of  the  United  States  troops,  on 
the  22nd  day  of  September,  1861,  destroyed  the  town  of  Osceola, 
St.  Clair  county,  Missouri.  This  is  generally  stated  as  the  excuse 
for  the  Lawrence  Massacre  of  August  21,  1863.  Lane  went  to 
Osceola  on  a  legitimate  errand  of  warfare  —  to  destroy  certain 
supplies  of  the  enemy  —  Sterling  Price  at  this  time  having  cap- 
tured Colonel  Mulligan  at  Lexington.  Lane  was  fired  on  from 
ambush,  and  in  returning  the  fire  killed  one  man.  Lane's  men 
helped  the  women  get  their  personal  effects  from  their  houses. 
Lane  took  the  records  from  the  court-house  before  applying  the 
torch,  and  returned  them  at  the  close  of  the  war.  Lawrence  was 
destroyed  or  besieged  three  times  —  in  December,  1855,  May  21, 
1856,  and  September  15,  1856.  This  third  time  Governor  Geary 
arrived  with  United  States  troops  to  turn  back  to  Missouri  the 
2,700  invaders.  Osawatomie  was  raided  and  robbed  by  150  Mis- 
sourians  June  6,  and  destroyed  by  500  Missourians  August 
30,  1856.  The  Marais  des  Cygnes  Massacre,  May  18,  1858, 
was  planned  at  Papinsville,  Bates  county,  Missouri,  and  put 
into  lawful  execution  on  the  19th.  Thus  there  were  six  raids 
from  Missouri  into  Kansas  before  John  Brown  made  the  first 
raid  from  Kansas  into  Missouri,  December,  1858,  when  he 
brought  out  eleven  negroes.  The  second  raid  from  Kansas  into 
Missouri  was  by  James  B.  Abbott  and  party,  July  23,  1859, 
who  rescued  John  Doy  from  jail  in  St.  Joseph.  Lane's  march 
upon  Osceola  was  five  months  after  the  assault  upon  Fort 


v 


296          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Sumter,  and  prior  to  it  there  was  the  seizure  of  Camp  Jackson, 
the  Platte  Bridge  Massacre,  the  battle  of  Wilson  Creek,  the  siege 
of  Lexington,  and  the  battle  of  Morristown. 

With  all  these  things  Quantrill  was  familiar.  He  had  ar- 
rived in  Kansas  too  late  to  participate  in  all  the  wars  between 
the  Territory  and  Missouri.  But  he  was  a  prominent  character 
in  the  bands  that  invaded  Missouri  for  reprisal.  How  he  had 
been  carried  over  to  the  side  of  the  Missourians  has  been  told 
herein.  He  carried  there  with  him  an  intense  hatred  of  Kansas, 
and  he  added  to  it  all  the  bitterness  he  found  there  as  the  result 
of  the  conflict  which  arose  over  slavery.  He  had  no  convictions 
on  any  subject,  but  governed  his  life  by  personal  grievances 
which  came  upon  him  because  of  his  crimes. 

When  the  war  came  on  and  the  pro-slavery  men  had  cast 
their  lot  with  the  Confederacy,  the  positions  of  the  Kansans  and 
the  Missourians  were  exactly  reversed;  the  Washington  govern- 
ment was  behind  the  Kansans.  There  were  rough  characters 
in  Kansas  who  had  been  developed  in  the  bloody  scenes  upon 
the  border.  These  took  occasion  to  settle  old  scores  over  the 
line.  They  did,  after  the  war  began,  what  the  Missourians  had 
been  doing  to  Kansas  since  1854.  That  some  of  these  Kansas 
men  as  soldiers  committed  excesses  and  crimes  in  Missouri  has 
always  been  admitted.  General  Schofield,  in  his  official  report 
of  the  Lawrence  Massacre,  admits  it,  and  it  has  never  been  de- 
nied. And  in  Kansas  it  was  never  justified,  palliated,  nor  ex- 
cused. The  perpetrators  of  these  crimes  were  never  in  good 
standing  in  Kansas.  They  slunk  out  of  sight  and  disappeared. 
They  did  not  engage  in  general  highway  robbery  and  murder 
after  the  war.  Kansas  executed  or  killed  Cleveland  or  Metz 
during  the  war  for  attempting  such  a  course. 

And,  as  has  been  pointed  out  herein,  the  Missourians  had 
more  to  complain  of  from  brother  Missourians  than  from  any 
other  people.  All  the  immediate  causes  for  the  Lawrence  Mas- 
sacre enumerated  in  the  Gregg  Manuscript  are  expressly  charged 
in  that  paper  to  Colonel  Penick  and  his  regiment  of  Missourians. 

And  it  must  be  remembered  that  prior  to  the  Lawrence 
Massacre  Quantrill  had  raided  Aubry  and  burned  it,  had  raided 
Shawneetown  and  burned  it,  had  raided  Olathe  and  murdered 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  297 

and  robbed  there,  and  had  killed  citizens  and  non-combatants 
in  all  these  raids.  Todd  had  raided  Spring  Hill,  and  Bill  Ander- 
son had  raided  far  into  Kansas  along  the  Old  Santa  Fe  Trail, 
burning  and  murdering. 

No,  the  guerrillas  had  no  sufficient  cause  for  the  Lawrence 
Massacre.  It  was  never  the  home  of  Jennison,  the  Kansan  of 
whom  Missourians  had  most  cause  to  complain.  The  Massacre 
had  its  origin  in  the  hatred  slavery  bore  the  town  and  in  the 
depravity  and  desperation  of  Quantrill  himself. 


CHAPTER  XXIV 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE 
II 

KANSAS  should  be  laid  waste  at  once. 
That  is  what  Quantrill  told  the  Confederate  secretary 
of  war  at  Richmond  when  he  went  there  seeking  author- 
ity to  raise  a  regiment  of  Partisan  Rangers. 

Kansas  should  be  laid  waste  at  once. 

This  was  the  one  idea  of  Quantrill.  It  was  ever  present  in 
his  mind.  The  one  object  of  his  life  was  to  enter  Kansas  with 
an  adequate  force,  and  then  burn  and  murder.  He  would  devas- 
tate—  would  become  a  devouring  fire. 

And  for  what  ?  Not  that  Kansas  or  any  of  her  citizens  had 
harmed  him  or  injured  Missouri.  Quantrill  cared  nothing  for 
Missouri.  He  cared  only  for  Quantrill.  His  whole  life  was 
predicated  on  the  incomprehensible  misanthropy  rankling  in  his 
own  soul.  Missouri  and  Missourians  were  to  him  a  means  to  an 
end  —  to  harrass,  murder,  burn,  rob,  destroy,  lay  waste  in  Kan- 
sas. Only  that.  Nothing  more.  He  murdered  many  Missourians. 
Any  man  in  Missouri  who  would  not  aid  him  to  ravage  Kansas 
was  a  dead  man  if  Quantrill  could  get  his  hands  upon  him. 
"When  a  man  deliberately  and  with  malice  wrongs  another  the 
act  embitters  him,  recoils  upon  him,  plunges  him  into  excesses. 
He  hopes  the  cumulative  nature  of  these  excesses  may  in  some 
way  work  him  out  a  cause  —  a  justification.  This  self-deception 
seems  to  be  inherent  in  man.  It  had  complete  control  of  Quan- 
trill. He  had  run  swiftly  in  the  ways  of  wickedness,  depravity 
and  crime  in  Kansas.  He  knew  that  he  should  be  despised  there, 
abhorred;  and  knowing  this,  he  believed  the  people  of  Kansas 
held  him  in  loathing,  detestation.  A  soul  like  Quantrill 's  reasons 
that  way.  He  raged  against  Kansas  day  and  night.  He  thought 
of  nothing  but  the  humiliation  and  destruction  of  her  people. 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE 


299 


That  is  why  he  sought  authority  in  Richmond  to  raise  a  regi- 
ment of  outlaws.  For  then  he  could  shed  blood  like  water  in 
Kansas.  Then  would  the  sky  be  blackened  with  the  smoke  rising 
from  the  scourging  of  Kansas,  and  the  land  filled  with  the  la- 
mentations of  the  orphan  and  the  homeless  widow  —  a  sacrifice 
required,  demanded,  cried  for  by  the  hideous,  monstrous,  mis- 
shapen thing  Quan trill  called  his  soul.  "Kansas  should  be  laid 
waste  at  once."  That  was  his  cry,  his  thought  day  and  night  — 
his  life. 


"While  Quantrill  had  lost  favor  with  his  officers,  he  was  still 
strong  with  the  guerrillas.  They  worshiped  him.  According  to 
his  tale  he  had  a  grievance,  a  cause  for  his  malevolence,  a  justi- 
fication for  his  desperation.  They  could  understand  that  matter 
as  long  as  they  believed  his  story  true,  and  he  was  careful  to  talk 
little  of  his  past  life.  He  knew  he  lived  over  a  mine  always 
smouldering  to  the  verge  of  explosion. 

Seeing  what  sympathy  and  strength  a  grievance  brought  to 
Quantrill,  other  guerrilla  captains  sought  to  establish  grievances 
for  themselves.  In  some  instances  these  grievances  were  invented 
for  them  long  after  they  were  dead. 

In  1863  General  Ewing,  in  command  at  Kansas  City,  had 
been  compelled  to  arrest  and  imprison 
a  number  of  young  women  living  in  Jack- 
son county,  Missouri.  These  women  were 
spies,  impelled  by  love  for  fathers,  broth- 
ers, or  sweethearts  in  the  guerrilla  camps. 
The  love  and  devotion  of  women  can 
never  be  told.  Woman  is  a  partisan. 
She  will  give  her  life  for  any  cause  she 
may  espouse  —  and  give  it  freely  —  and 
all  the  more  freely  if  maternal  love  is  in- 
volved. This  principle  is  the  sheet-an- 
chor, the  hope  of  the  world. 

These  women  rode  into  Kansas  City 
almost  daily.     They  saw  everything  and 
talked  to  those  who  could  give  them  information  that  would  be 
of  benefit  to  the  guerrillas.     They  secretly  bought  pistol-caps 


Nannie  Hani* 


300          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

and  other  ammunition.  When  they  left  the  city  they  rode  by 
many  a  turn  of  lane  and  stream,  through  thickets  and  over 
rough  hills,  to  the  safe  hiding-places  of  the  guerrillas  to  report 
and  deliver  supplies.  Who  could  blame  the  guerrillas  for  wor- 
shiping them,  for  being  ever  ready  and  willing  to  fight  to  the 
death  for  them?  No  one.  It  is  to  their  credit  that  they  thus 
regarded  these  young  women  —  greatly  to  their  credit.  Nor 
can  one  find  it  in  his  heart  to  censure  much  these  girls,  though 
their  actions  forfeited  their  lives  by  all  military  codes.  No 
doubt,  General  Ewing  much  regretted  the  necessity  for  placing 
them  in  confinement,  for  any  harsh  measure  towards  woman 
grieves  every  honorable  man.  He  dealt  with  them  very  leniently 
and  allowed  them  great  latitude;  when  they  were  cut  off  from 
communication  with  the  guerrillas  his  whole  object  was  ac- 
complished. 

Among  these  women  were  the  sisters  of  Bill  Anderson  — 
three  sisters,  Josephine,  Mary,  and  Jenny.  They  had  been 
arrested  south  of  Westport,  near  the  State-line,  by  a  detail  sent 
out  for  that  purpose.  Their  arrest  was  accomplished  with  dif- 
ficulty, for  they  fought  like  wildcats  and  screamed  at  their  high- 
est pitch.  But  two  of  them  were  arrested,  the  third  being  but  a 
child.  Bill  Anderson  and  a  number  of  guerrillas  chanced  to 
be  in  hearing  and  came  to  the  rescue.  The  two  men  who  had 
discovered  the  girls  were  dismounted  and  marching  them  along 
the  road  —  a  lane  enclosed  by  high  rail  fences  —  when  the  guer- 
rillas appeared.  The  captors  forced  the  girls  to  mount,  then 
they  mounted  behind  the  saddles.  Seizing  the  reins  they 
faced  the  guerrillas,  who  could  not  shoot  without  hitting  the 
captives.  It  was  a  desperate  situation,  and  the  men  told  thp 
guerrillas  that  if  either  horse  or  man  was  wounded  the  girls 
would  be  shot  at  once.  Then  these  Union  soldiers  backed  their 
horses  along  the  road  in  slow  retreat  from  the  guerrillas  until 
the  other  portion  of  the  detail  came  up,  when  the  girls  were 
brought  off  easily  and  taken  into  the  lines.  The  younger  sister, 
Jenny,  came  in  voluntarily  to  live  with  the  others. 

These  women  were  imprisoned  in  a  cheap,  poorly  con- 
structed, two-story  brick  building  on  Grand  avenue  between 
Fourteenth  and  Fifteenth  streets.  The  rear  of  the  building 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE 


301 


Charity  Kerr 


extended  back  into  a  ravine,  where  the 
walls  of  the  foundation  had  been  built 
without  excavation,  the  ground  there 
being  low,  and  the  intention  being  to  fill 
about  the  walls  and  thus  give  them  earth 
support.  But  this  filling  had  not  been 
done.  The  rear  room  of  this  building, 
in  the  first  story,  had  never  been  com- 
pleted. There  was  no  floor  in  it,  and  the 
hogs  that  then  ranged  at  large  in  Kan- 
sas City  came  there  to  lie  in  the  shade 
and  the  loose  dirt  which  they  rooted  up 
along  the  walls.  It  must  be  said  that 
there  was  negligence  in  the  care  of  this 
building  by  General  Ewing. 

There  were  about  a  dozen  of  these  women  in  prison.  Sev- 
enteen, in  all,  had  been  arrested.  Some  time  in  the  summer  or 
fall  of  1863  it  was  decided  to  send  them  to  St.  Louis  where  bet- 
ter accommodations  could  be  found  for  them.  In  some  way  they 
discovered  that  they  were  to  be  sent  away  from  Kansas  City, 
and  they  determined  to  escape  if  possible.  They  dug  under  the 
foundation  wall  of  that  part  of  the  building  occupied  by  them, 
and  in  one  more  night  they  would  have  dug  their  way  out  and 
have  been  free.  But  a  wind-storm  came  up  and  the  building  col- 
lapsed, killing  a  number  of  the  women  and  wounding  others. 
The  guerrillas  at  once  charged  that  the  Union  military  authori- 
ties had  caused  the  walls  to  be  undermined  for  the  purpose  ef 
throwing  down  the  house  to  kill  the  captives.  It  is  very  difficult 
to  see  what  motive  could  have  been  behind  any  such  action.1 

i  There  have  been  many  versions  of  this  affair  found  by  the  author. 
Some  of  them  are  very  different  from  that  given  in  the  text,  and  some 
could  not  appear  in  print.  The  above  account  is  the  best  the  author 
could  make  up  from  the  conflicting  stories.  There  is  no  certainty  that  it 
is  correct  in  all  its  details.  This  statement  the  author  desires  to  make, 
for  he  would  not  do  injustice  to  these  girls  for  the  world.  They  were 
unfortunate.  They  may  have  been  harshly  dealt  with,  though  it  is  the 
opinion  of  the  author  that  they  were  very  leniently  dealt  with.  Where 
a  woman  is  concerned  in  such  a  matter  she  must  have  the  benefit  and 
advantage  of  every  thing  that  can  favor  her.  The  author  has  found  few 


302          QUANTEILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Major  Edwards  drew  a  very  pathetic  and  touching  picture 
of  the  sorrow  of  Bill  Anderson  when  he  saw  the  dead  body  of 
his  sister.  There  is  no  doubt  that  he  suffered  deep  sorrow,  guer- 
rilla though  he  was,  and  fiend  and  murderer.  Major  Edwards 
people  who  believe  that  the  building  was  undermined,  or  who  believe  there 
was  any  thing  which  could  have  caused  the  military  authorities  to  desire 
that  such  a  thing  should  be  done.  It  would  be  very  unjust  to  the  memory 
of  General  Ewing  to  fix  such  a  charge  upon  him  now  without  incontroverti- 
ble proof.  All  accounts  agree  that  he  strained  the  rules  to  give  them  as 
much  liberty  as  possible. 

Many  persons  have  denied  to  the  author  that  any  evidences  of  recent 
excavations  or  digging  about  the  walls  were  found.  Hon.  Cyrus  Leland,  Jr., 
was  then  on  General  Ewing 's  staff,  and  he  is  of  the  opinion  that  the  girls 
were  digging  their  way  out;  that  is  his  recollection  of  the  matter  now.  It 
was  largely  through  the  efforts  of  Mr.  Leland  that  Miss  Van  Ness  and 
others  were  liberated. 

Whatever  grievance  appears  for  the  guerrillas  must  be  set  down.  In 
all  discussions  of  these  times  they  must  have  not  only  justice  but  the 
benefit  of  the  doubt.  Even  then  their  case  will  be  difficult  enough.  It 
is  the  desire  and  intention  to  be  absolutely  fair  and  just  to  all  men  here. 

In  an  interview  in  1887  with  Ike  Hall  and  Don  Pence  at  Samuels 's 
Depot  (now  Wakefield,  Ky.)  W.  W.  Scott  was  told  that  General  Ewing 
captured  seventeen  girls  in  Jackson  and  Cass  counties,  Mo.,  and  that  the 
charge  was  harboring  their  brothers,  which  could  not  have  been  true,  for 
some  had  no  brothers  nor  parents  living.  Among  them  were  one  sister 
of  Tom  Hall  and  one  of  John  McCorkle.  It  was  told  Scott  that  Bill 
Anderson  was  working  on  a  farm  in  Kansas,  and  that  his  two  sisters 
were  captured  there  and  taken  to  Kansas  City.  These  girls  were  arrested 
in  1863,  and,  as  said  above,  the  Andersons  had  been  desperate  guerrillas 
two  years  then.  The  story  that  the  house  had  been  undermined  was  told 
Scott  by  Hall  and  Pence. 

At  this  same  interview  it  was  charged  that  John  Fox,  about  thirteen 
years  old,  who  had  a  brother  with  Quantrill,  was  shot  and  killed  while  his 
sister  and  mother  had  hold  of  him  begging  for  his  life.  The  charge  was 
that  he  fed  his  brother.  James  Nicholson,  fourteen  years  old,  was  killed 
because  he  had  two  brothers  with  Price.  Hicks  George  was  hung,  but  not 
killed,  and  joined  Quantrill.  What  he  was  charged  with  is  not  stated. 

Don  Pence  said  he  joined  Quantrill  in  May  or  June,  1864.  His 
brother,  Bud  Pence,  had  joined  him  six  months  before.  Men  came  to  his 
father's  house,  in  Clay  county,  Mo.,  and  put  a  rope  around  his  father's 
neck  and  threatened  to  hang  him  if  he  did  not  tell  where  Bud  was.  He 
did  not  know.  They  broke  a  fiddle  over  his  head  and  also  the  stock  of 
a  gun  in  their  persuasions  before  hanging.  These  had  no  effect,  and  he 
was  pulled  up  off  his  feet  two  or  three  times.  But  no  information  was 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  303 

would  have  us  believe  that  the  death  of  his  sister  under  these 
circumstances  caused  Bill  Anderson  to  become  a  guerrilla. 
Kneeling  beside  her  he  vowed  to  avenge  her  death  and  imme- 
diately entered  the  guerrilla  camp.  Now,  the  truth  is,  that  Bill 

gained.  He  was  allowed  to  live,  and  moved  to  Liberty  to  save  sending 
Don  to  Quantrill,  but  finally  sent  him. 

Ike  Hall  said  that  Joseph  Hall  and  family  lived  in  Cass  county,  Me., 
fifteen  miles  from  Kansas  City,  when  they  first  heard  of  Quantrill,  in 
connection  with  the  Morgan  Walker  raid.  They  saw  Quantrill  riding 
about  with  a  squad  after  the  war  broke  out.  His  brother,  Joseph  Hall, 
joined  him  in  1861,  and  in  April  or  May,  1862,  Ike  joined  him  at  Blue 
Springs.  Later  in  that  year  Bob  Hall  joined.  That  left  the  father, 
mother,  and  one  sister  at  home.  Jennison,  in  the  winter  of  1862,  made 
the  mother  set  fire  to  her  own  house.  When  she  cried  and  put  up  her 
hands  to  wipe  away  the  tears  they  jerked  her  hands  down  and  cursed  her. 
They  let  her  take  out  a  part  of  her  things,  but  made  her  throw  some  of 
them  back  into  the  fire.  They  burned  the  houses  of  four  neighbors  the 
same  day. 

The  above  are  probably  true  accounts.  The  Memo,  of  the  interview 
is  in  the  Collection  of  the  author. 

In  a  letter  written  by  C.  M.  Chase  in  1873  from  Leavenworth, 
Kansas,  to  his  paper  at  Lyndon,  Vermont,  the  following,  in  relation  to 
Jennison,  appears: 

This  is  the  home  of  Jennison,  the  Kansas  Jayhawker,  and  of  his 
associates.  He  was  a  strong  slavery  man  in  the  '56  times,  but  when  the 
rebellion  broke  out  the  Union  side  afforded  the  best  opportunities  for 
robbery,  and  he  was  nominally  a  Union  man,  but  really  a  plunderer  of 
Missouri  property.  There  are  miles  and  miles  of  Missouri  thoroughfare, 
on  the  border,  on  which  Jennison  and  his  men  burned  every  house  and  in 
many  instances  slaughtered  the  people.  One  old  lady  tells  us  her  experi- 
ence: Her  husband  had  been  reported  a  rebel,  by  some  of  Jennison 's 
men.  In  passing  his  house  Jennison  called  him  out,  and,  without  much 
parleying,  ordered  his  boys  to  string  him  up  on  his  own  piazza.  In  spite 
of  the  woman's  entreaties  and  crying  a  rope  was  fastened  to  his  neck,  and, 
with  the  other  end  thrown  over  a  beam,  he  was  jerked  several  feet  into 
the  air.  As  his  neck  was  not  broken,  he  struggled  violently  for  release, 
when  Jennison  ordered  two  of  his  men  to  jump  upon  him  and  break  his 
neck.  This  was  done,  in  the  very  face  of  the  wife,  "and  there,"  said  she, 
' '  is  the  very  beam  where  they  hung  him. ' '  This  is  but  one  specimen  of  the 
numerous  cases  of  out-lawing  perpetrated  in  those  times. 

The  error  in  this  is  the  statement  that  Jennison  was  a  slavery  man; 
he  never  was  that. 

But  to  show  that  such  things  were  not  uncommon,  and  to  show  that 
they  had  existed  long,  the  author  will  gay  that  Hon.  George  W.  Martin, 
Secretary  of  the  Kansas  State  Historical  Society,  has  repeatedly  told  me 
that  a  member  of  his  family  saw  Sheriff  Jones,  of  Douglas  county,  Kansas 
Territory,  set  on  fire  the  homes  of  six  Free-State  settlers  one  day  as  he 


304          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

Anderson  was  one  of  the  first  guerrillas  to  take  to  the  brush. 
He  was  active  in  1861.  At  the  time  of  his  sister's  death  Bill 
Anderson  and  his  brother  had  been  the  most  desperate  guerrillas 
and  horse-thieves  on  the  border  for  two  years.  But  it  was  made 
an  excuse  for  Bill  Anderson's  savagery  and  one  of  the  excuses 
for  the  Lawrence  Massacre. 

ALICE  VAN  NESS 

One  of  these  girls,  Alice  Van  Ness,  afterwards  achieved  fame 
as  an  actress.    Her  stage  name  was  Alice  Vane.    Before  the  war 
her  father,  then  a  widower,  moved  with  his  children  from  Mary- 
land to  St.  Joseph,  Mo.,  and  there  engaged 
hi  the  wholesale  liquor  business.    He  died 
about  the  year  1861,  leaving  a  son,  then  in 
California,  and  a  daughter  —  Alice.    This 
daughter  was  a  very  beautiful  girl;  she 
sympathized  with  the  South.    Not  much 
is  known  of  her  until  the  spring  of  1863. 
She  often  visited  at  the  home  of  the  Tor- 
'reys,  in  Paolo.     The  Torreys  were  in  full 
sympathy  with  the  South  and  with  Quan- 
trill,  and  their  tavern  was  always  a  meet- 
ing-place  for   disloyal   people.    After   a 
Ato*  Van  N«»  visit  there  of  some  weeks  in  the  spring  of 

1863  Miss  Van  Ness  returned  to  Kansas 

City,  and  was  soon  arrested  by  order  of  General  Ewing  as  a  spy 
and  imprisoned  in  the  old  house  on  Grand  avenue.  She  was  in 
the  building  when  it  fell  down,  but  escaped  unhurt. 

The  prisoners  were  placed  in  the  Union  Hotel  when  rescued 
from  the  ruins  of  the  Grand  avenue  building.  There  they  were 
given  the  top  floor,  and  guards  were  set  to  protect  and  retain 

rode  into  Lecompton.  Sheriff  Jones  lived  in  Westport,  Mo.,  but  in  border- 
ruffian  rule  in  Kansas  was  the  sheriff  of  Douglas  county.  Such  men 
as  Jones  had  practiced  murder,  robbery,  house-burning,  town-sacking  in 
Kansas  Territory  six  years  before  the  Civil  War  began.  That  did  not 
justify  Jennison  or  any  other  officer  in  violation  of  the  rules  of  civilized 
warfare  in  Missouri,  however.  Jennison  should  have  been  hung  for  his 
crimes  there,  no  doubt. 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  305 

them.  This  hotel  was  on  Main  street  (east  side)  about  Sixth 
street. 

Lieutenant  Cyrus  Leland,  Jr.,  then  on  General  Ewing's 
staff,  boarded  at  this  hotel.  He  was  sent  to  the  prison  one  even- 
ing after  the  Lawrence  Massacre,  and  was  there  spoken  to  by 
Miss  Van  Ness,  whom  he  had  never  seen  before.  She  wished 
to  secure  a  parole  and  permission  to  again  visit  the  Torreys,  and 
inquired  of  Leland  how  to  proceed  in  the  matter.  Leland  told 
her  to  write  a  letter  to  General  Ewing  stating  her  request.  This 
she  did,  and  Ewing  had  her  brought  before  him  for  examination, 
which  ended  in  her  being  paroled  for  ten  days  with  permission  to 
visit  the  Torreys.  She  returned  to  Kansas  City  at  the  expiration 
of  her  parole  and  was  permitted  to  live  with  an  old  lady,  an 
acquaintance  and  friend  of  the  family,  who  lived  in  McGee's 
Addition-.  She  was  required  to  report  to  headquarters  at  stated 
periods,  and  there  she  often  saw  Leland.  He  sometimes  called 
on  her  at  her  residence.  He  had  delivered  her  the  papers  — 
parole  and  permission  to  visit  the  Torreys  —  and  she  at  that  time 
sang  a  number  of  songs,  playing  a  guitar  as  accompaniment. 
Her  father  was  a  Jew  and  a  fine  musician,  and  she  had  inherited 
his  talent  in  that  line.  She  always  sang  when  requested  by 
Leland  and  other  young  men  who  called  on  her,  and  her  musical 
talent  was  soon  well  known. 

She  desired  to  be  released  and  to  go  to  work  at  something  for 
her  support.  There  was  no  direct  evidence  against  her  on  the 
charge  of  being  a  spy.  She  appealed  to  Leland  to  aid  her,  and 
he  said  he  would  do  what  he  could  to  assist  her.  At  that  time 
the  Templeton  &  Wildman  Theatrical  Co.,  was  playing  an  engage- 
ment at  Long  Hall,  on  the  east  side  of  Main  street,  about 
Seventh.  Leland  often  went  there,  and  was  acquainted  with 
Templeton,  whom  he  told  of  the  musical  ability  of  Miss  Van  Ness. 
Together  they  went  to  see  her,  and  she  sang  a  number  of  pieces 
for  them-  Templeton  said  that  if  she  could  sing  before  an  audi- 
ence he  would  give  her  a  position  in  the  company,  but  would  not 
pay  much  salary  at  first.  It  was  arranged  that  she  should 
appear  in  the  regular  performance  two  or  three  days  later.  Tem- 
pleton advertised  that  in  the  interval  between  the  musical  part  of 

the  program  and  the  farce  with  which  the  performance  was 
21 


306          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

closed,  a  lady  living  in  the  city  would  sing,  but  did  not  say  who 
the  lady  was.  Leland  desired  that  she  make  a  success  of  the 
effort,  and  he  procured  a  number  of  bouquets  to  be  thrown  on  the 
stage  at  the  end  of  the  pieces  to  be  sung,  and  got  parties  in  the 
proper  position  to  throw  them.  She  was  a  little  nervous,  but  got 
through  the  first  piece  very  well,  and  when  the  bouquets  were 
thrown  to  her  she  seemed  much  pleased.  She  was  applauded. 
In  rendering  the  second  piece  she  did  much  better  than  in  the 
first,  being  then  completely  recovered  and  reassured.  The  audi- 
ence called  for  her  again,  but  Templeton  had  told  her  she  must 
sing  but  two  pieces,  and  she  was  permitted  only  to  appear  and 
bow  her  acknowledgements.  General  Ewing  and  his  wife  wit- 
nessed the  performance.  Templeton  engaged  Miss  Van  Ness  to 
sing  regularly. 

When  General  Ewing  was  given  the  St.  Louis  Military  Dis- 
trict, he  issued  orders  of  permanent  banishment  against  a  num- 
ber of  people  in  the  Kansas  City  District.  Leland  had  him  issue 
one  against  Miss  Van  Ness,  that  she  could  go  with  the  theatrical 
company.  She  was  required  to  leave  the  District  in  three  days. 
The  second  night  the  company  played  at  Atchison,  and  the  third 
night  at  St.  Joseph,  which  was  outside  the  lines  of  the  District. 

Miss  Van  Ness  later  married  John  Templeton,  principal 
owner  of  the  company,  and  their  daughter,  Fay  Templeton,  is  the 
famous  actress.  Fay  was  put  on  the  stage  by  her  parents  when 
but  a  child,  and  at  the  age  of  eighteen  she  was  the  star,  and  the 
company  was  reorganized  and  called  the  Templeton  Opera  Com- 
pany. For  many  years  Alice  Van  Ness  Templeton  played  a  lead- 
ing part  in  the  company  under  the  name  of  Alice  Vane.  She 
retained  her  beauty  to  late  in  life.  After  the  death  of  her  hus- 
band she  married  a  man  of  wealth  and  lives  now  in  Chicago. 

Some  months  after  her  engagement  with  the  Templeton  & 
Wildman  Theatrical  Co.,  it  was  determined  that  the  company 
would  go  to  Little  Rock  to  fill  an  engagement  there.  Permission 
to  go  had  to  be  secured  from  General  Ewing,  at  St.  Louis.  The 
little  steamer  on  which  they  descended  the  Mississippi  and 
ascended  the  Arkansas  was  captured  by  Confederate  soldiers 
below  Little  Rock.  When  the  pillage  of  the  boat  began  Miss 
Van  Ness  bethought  her  of  her  banishment  papers.  She  waved 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  307 

them  above  her  head  and  called  for  the  commander  of  the  troops. 
When  he  saw  that  she  had  been  banished  for  loyalty  to  the  South 
she  demanded  protection  for  herself  and  the  company,  which 
the  commander  granted,  and  no  property  of  Templeton  &  Wild- 
man  was  molested. 


CHAPTER  XXV 

THE   LAWRENCE   MASSACRE 
III 

THAT  the  Lawrence  Massacre  was  not  in  retaliation  for 
the  destruction  of  the  Confederate  warehouses  and  sup- 
plies at  Osceola  is  fully  established  by  Quantrill's  state- 
ment of  the  reasons  why  it  should  be  accomplished. l  This 
statement  was  made  to  the  captains  of  the  various  bands  of  guer- 
rillas who  paid  him  allegiance.  He  assembled  them  early  in 
July,  1863,  to  urge  upon  them  the  necessity  of  destroying  Law- 
rence. Captain  William  H.  Gregg  was  present,  and  in  his 
Manuscript  has  preserved  a  portion  of  what  Quantrill  said  to 
his  captains  in  laying  the  matter  before  them.  And  in  this  rela- 
tion Gregg  says  of  Quantrill : 

"He  longed  to  get  even  with  Kansas.     His  proposition  was 
to  go  to  Lawrence." 

"He  longed  to  get  even  with  Kansas."    Do  not  forget  that. 
Continuing,  Gregg  quotes  part  of  the  speech  of  Quantrill 
to  his  captains,  as  follows: 

He  said  in  part: 

"The  Kansan  has  been  murdering  and  robbing  our  people  for 
two  years  or  more,  and  burned  their  houses  by  districts,  hauled 
their  household  plunder,  farming  implements,  etc.,  to  Kansas, 
driven  off  their  cattle,  etc.,  until  forbearance  has  ceased  to  be 
a  virtue.  Lawrence  is  the  great  hot-bed  of  abolitionism  in  Kan- 
sas. All  the  plunder  (or  at  least  the  bulk  of  it)  stolen  from 
Missouri  will  be  found  stored  away  in  Lawrence.  "We  can  get 
more  revenge  and  more  money  there  than  anywhere  else  in  the 
State  of  Kansas." 


i  For  a  full  account  and  discussion  of  the  burning  of  Osceola,  see 
Kansas  Historical  Collections,  Vol.  VI,  p.  305,  et  seq.  The  account  IB  by 
John  Speer,  who  visited  Osceola  and  obtained  the  facts  from  the  people 
of  the  town. 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  309 

Some  said  the  undertaking  was  too  hazardous.  On  this 
point  the  Chief  said: 

"I  know  the  hazard  this  enterprise  bears,  but  if  you  never 
risk,  you  never  gain." 

So,  Quantrill  won,  though  the  council  was  long  and  spirited, 
and  his  victory  was  secured  with  difficulty.  The  deliberations 
lasted  twenty-four  hours. 

Notice  these  reasons. 

"The  Kansan  has  been  murdering  and  robbing  our  people 
for  two  years  or  more,  and  burned  their  houses  by  districts, 
hauled  their  household  plunder,  farming  implements,  etc.,  to 
Kansas,  driven  off  their  cattle,  etc.,  until  forbearance  has  ceased 
to  be  a  virtue." 

Against  this,  set  Aubry,  Olathe,  Shawneetown,  Spring  Hill, 
Humboldt,  which  was  twice  sacked  and  burned,  and  the  murders 
and  burnings  of  Bill  Anderson  along  the  Old  Santa  Fe  Trail  as 
far  west  as  Council  Grove.  This  during  the  war.  Then  set 
down  the  Territorial  sackings. 

"Lawrence  is  the  great  hot-bed  of  abolitionism  in  Kan- 
sas." 

Against  this  we  have  nothing  to  place  as  an  offset.  It  does 
not  require  any  offset. 

' '  We  can  get  more  revenge  and  more  money  there  than  any- 
where else  in  the  State  of  Kansas." 

Quantrill  had  reserved  his  strongest  argument  to  the  last  of 
the  debate.  Revenge  and  money.  Plunder.  Loot.  The  same 
old  causes  which  had  induced  him  to  invade  Missouri  and  carry 
out  negroes  in  Territorial  times.  Revenge  was  well  enough  for 
the  others  of  the  band.  For  himself,  money,  money.  And  inci- 
dental revenge  on  individuals  who  might  know  too  much  of  his 
past  or  with  whom  he  had  kidnapped  free  negroes  or  runaway 
slaves.  Money  and  a  general  and  bitter  hatred  of  Kansas  on 
personal  grounds.  He  cared  nothing  for  the  array  of  crimes  he 
first  enumerated  to  his  captains.  Such  things  would  do  for  them. 
For  himself,  he  kept  his  own  counsel.  He  carried  scars  they 
could  not  see. 

Quantrill  had  sent  spies  to  Lawrence  frequently  in  the  sum- 
mer of  1863.  And  his  guerrillas  have  told  the  author  that  some 
residents  of  the  town  had  always  kept  in  communication  with 


310    QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

him.  Edwards  says  that  Charles  T.  ("Fletch")  Taylor  had 
been  in  Lawrence  for  some  time  just  previous  to  the  raid.  In  the 
Kansas  City  Star,  July  19,  1903,  there  is  a  long  and  excellent 
article  by  Frederic  William  Hinsey  on  the  events  preceding  the 
Lawrence  Massacre.  It  gives  an  account  of  a  visit  by  Quantrill 
himself,  with  two  of  his  guerrillas,  to  Eudora,  a  town  some  eight 
miles  east  of  Lawrence.  This  visit  was  a  few  weeks  before  the 
Massacre  at  Lawrence,  and  Quantrill  was  no  doubt  making  a  per- 
sonal examination  of  the  country  to  refresh  his  memory  as  to 
roads,  and  to  see  what  obstacles  he  would  have  to  contend  with. 
He  was  recognized  beyond  doubt,  it  would  seem  from  this 
account,  but  not  until  he  and  his  men  were  mounted  and  ready 
to  depart.  Then  defiantly  announcing  that  he  had  that  day 
"fooled  the  Dutch"  (Eudora  was  settled  by  Germans)  he  rode 
away.  That  he  was  thoroughly  informed  concerning  Lawrence 
and  the  country  around  it  for  some  months  before  the  raid  there 
is  no  doubt.  His  men,  in  conversation  with  me,  have  impli- 
cated one  of  the  prominent  men  of  Kansas  in  Quantrill 's  designs 
on  Lawrence,  saying  they  had  seen  letters  in  the  hands  of  Quan- 
trill from  him  under  a  name  agreed  on  by  them.  John  Noland, 
a  negro,  now  living  in  Kansas  City,  had  been  sent  to  Lawrence 
as  a  spy  by  Quantrill,  but  he  insists  that  Quantrill  had  gone  on 
the  raid  before  he  returned.2 

2  The  author  has  seen  Noland,  but  he  would  not  talk.  He  seems 
afraid  he  might  yet  have  trouble  if  he  should  admit  that  he  saw  Quantrill 
after  he  returned  from  Lawrence  and  before  the  raid.  That  Quantrill  had 
accurate  information  of  the  situation  at  Lawrence  there  is  no  doubt. 

The  inauguration  of  the  Lawrence  Massacre  is  thus  described  by 
Major  Edwards: 

Without  in  the  least  degree  increasing  or  decreasing  the  difficulties 
of  the  undertaking,  Quantrell  laid  before  his  officers  his  plan  for  attacking 
Lawrence.  For  a  week  a  man  of  the  command  —  a  cool,  bold,  plausible, 
desperate  man  —  had  been  in  the  city  —  through  it,  over  it,  about  it,  and 
around  it  —  and  he  was  here  in  the  midst  of  them  to  report.  Would 
they  listen  to  him?  "Let  him  speak,"  said  Todd,  sententiously.  Lieu- 
tenant Fletcher  Taylor  came  out  of  the  shadow,  bowed  gravely  to  the 
group,  and  with  the  brevity  of  a  soldier  who  knew  better  how  to  fight  than 
to  talk,  laid  bare  the  situation.  Disguised  as  a  stock  trader,  or,  rather 
assuming  the  role  of  a  speculating  man,  he  had  boldly  entered  Lawrence. 
Liberal,  bountifully  supplied  with  money,  keeping  open  rooms  at  the 
Eldridge  House,  and  agreeable  in  every  way  and  upon  every  occasion,  he 
had  seen  all  that  was  necessary  to  see,  and  learned  all  that  could  be  of 
any  possible  advantage  to  the  Guerrillas.  The  city  proper  was  but  weakly 


311 

The  council  of  captains  to  make  final  plans  and  arrange- 
ments for  the  raid  was  held  about  the  10th  of  August.  From 
this  council  the  captains  returned  to  their  camps  to  set  things 
in  order.  For  some  days  the  guerrillas  did  little  but  clean  and 
oil  their  pistols,  mould  bullets  and  mend  their  war-harness. 
Every  woman  who  would  make  the  venture  was  sent  to  Kansas 
City  to  get  pistol-caps  and  powder,  and  an  immense  supply  was 
collected. 

The  general  rendezvous  of  the  guerrillas  was  the  farm 
of  Captain  Perdee,  on  the  Blackwater,  in  Johnson  county,  Mis- 
garrisoned;  the  camp  beyond  the  river  was  not  strong;  the  idea  of  a 
raid  by  Quantrell  was  honestly  derided;  supineness  next  to  belief  was  the 
most  predominant  madness  of  the  people;  the  streets  were  broad  and  good 
for  charging  horsemen,  and  the  hour  for  the  venture  was  near  at  hand. 

"You  have  heard  the  report,"  Quantrell 's  deep  voice  broke  in,  "but 
before  you  decide  it  is  proper  that  you  should  know  it  all.  The  march 
to  Lawrence  is  a  long  one;  in  every  little  town  there  are  soldiers;  we 
leave  soldiers  behind  us;  we  march  through  soldiers;  we  attack  the  town 
garrisoned  by  soldiers;  we  retreat  through  soldiers;  and  when  we  would 
rest  and  refit  after  the  exhaustive  expedition,  we  have  to  do  the  best  we 
can  in  the  midst  of  a  multitude  of  soldiers.  Come,  speak  out,  somebody. 
What  is  it,  Anderson?"  "Lawrence  or  hell,  but  with  one  proviso,  that 
we  kill  every  male  thing."  "Todd?"  "Lawrence,  if  I  knew  that  not 
a  man  would  get  back  alive."  "Gregg?"  "Lawrence;  it  is  the  home  of 
Jim  Lane;  the  foster-mother  of  Bed  Legs;  the  nurse  of  the  Jayhawkers. " 
"Shepherd?"  "Lawrence;  I  know  it  of  old;  niggers  and  white  people 
are  just  the  same  there;  it's  a  Boston  colony  and  it  should  be  wiped  out." 
"Jarrette?"  "Lawrence,  by  all  means.  I've  had  my  eye  upon  it  for  a 
year.  The  head  devil  of  all  this  killing  and  burning  in  Jackson  county, 
I  vote  to  fight  it  with  fire  —  to  burn  it  before  we  leave  it. "  "  Dick 
Maddox?"  "Lawrence;  an  eye  for  an  eye  and  a  tooth  for  a  tooth;  God 
understands  better  than  we  do  the  equilibrium  of  civil  war."  "Holt?" 
"Lawrence;  and  quick  about  it."  "Yager?"  "Where  my  house  once 
stood  there  is  a  heap  of  ashes.  I  haven't  a  neighbor  that's  got  a  house  — 
Lawrence  and  the  torch."  "Blunt?"  "Count  me  in  whenever  there's 
killing.  Lawrence  first,  and  then  some  other  Kansas  town;  the  name  is 
nothing."  "Have  you  all  voted?"  "All."  "Then  Lawrence  it  is; 
saddle  up,  men ! ' '  Thus  was  the  Lawrence  Massacre  inaugurated. 

Major  Edwards  in  attempting  to  justify  the  Massacre  recites  all  the 
murders  and  outrages  that  had  occurred  in  Missouri  to  that  date  and 
charges  them  upon  Kansas.  He  goes  all  along  down  the  line  to  Cass, 
Bates,  Vernon,  and  other  counties.  He  says  that  in  the  fifteen  days 
preceding  the  Lawrence  Massacre  more  than  two  hundred  men  had  been 
killed  in  Missouri  by  Union  soldiers.  Of  course  these  were  all  harmless 
and  innocent!  But  he  forgets  that  Colonel  Penick,  a  Missourian,  was 
then  stationed  at  Independence,  or  had  been  a  short  time  before,  and 
other  Missouri  troops  and  commanders  at  Lexington,  Harrisonville,  Clinton, 
and  other  towns  in  Western  Missouri.  General  Ewing,  an  Ohio  man,  was 


312          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

souri,  about  four  miles  southwest  of  Columbus,  six  miles  south- 
east of  Chapel  Hill,  and  nine  miles  east  of  Lone  Jack.  Quantrill's 
immediate  followers  assembled  on  the  Little  Sni,  in  the  Cum- 
mings  settlement,  twenty-four  miles  southeast  of  Independence, 
on  the  18th  of  August.  That  night  they  rode  to  the  farm  of 

in  command  of  the  military  district  including  all  this  territory.  These 
men  who  were  killed  must  have  been  disloyal,  and  no  doubt  many  of  them 
were  guerrillas  who  were  caught  at  home.  That  some  were  innocent  and 
harmless,  and  their  execution  murder,  there  is  no  doubt. 

And  the  important  matter  that  he  omits,  and  that  Captain  Gregg 
omits,  is  that  there  were  few  Kansas  troops  then  in  Jackson  county  or  any 
other  Western  Missouri  county.  General  Slunt  was  holding  the  country 
from  Fort  Scott  to  Fort  Smith,  where  he  had  some  troops  from  Kansas. 
The  unfair  thing  in  all  these  attempts  to  justify  the  Lawrence  Massacre  is 
the  charging  to  Kansas  and  Kansas  troops  all  the  outrages  committed  in 
Western  Missouri  during  the  war  up  to  that  time,  when  the  writers  knew 
that  few  Kansas  troops  were  in  Missouri  after  1861.  In  writing  history 
some  regard  ought  to  l>e  paid  to  the  facts.  Also,  to  the  official  records. 

In  support  of  the  above,  there  is  copied  here  the  list  of  garrisons  in 
the  Military  District  of  Central  Missouri  for  the  year  1863,  taken  from 
Bebellion  Eeoords,  Series  I,  Vol.  23,  p.  891.  These  assignments  were  made 
December  31,  1862: 

Butler,  Mo. 

Second  Missouri  State  Militia  Cavalry,  Major  Frank  J.  White. 
Calhoun,  Mo. 

Sixth  Missouri  State  Militia  Cavalry,  Companies  B  and  D,  Captain 
William  Plumb. 

Gasconade,  Mo. 

Twenty-third  Missouri,  Company  A,  Lieutenant  Ephraim  L.  Webb. 
Harrisonville,  Mo. 

Fifth  Missouri  State  Militia  Cavalry  (four  companies),  Lieutemant 
Colonel  Philip  A.  Thompson. 

Independence,  Mo. 

Colonel  William  B.  Penick.  Fifth  Missouri  State  Militia  Cavalry 
(tkree  companies),  Major  Thomas  B.  Biggers. 

Missouri  State  Militia  Artillery   (one  battery). 
Jefferson  City,  Mo. 

Lieutenant-Colonel  H.  L.  Burns.  Fourth  Missouri  State  Militia  Cav- 
alry, Company  I,  Captain  Hannibal  B.  Davis. 

Fifth  Missouri  State  Militia  Cavalry,  Company  E. 
First  Missouri  State  Militia  Battery,  Captain  Albert  Wachsman. 
Kansas  City,  Mo. 

Fifth  Missouri  State  Militia  Cavalry  (one  company),  Major  William 
Drumhiller. 

(Later,  Major  Preston  B.  Plumb  and  some  Kansas  troops  were  added 
to  the  garrison  at  Kansas  City). 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  313 

Captain  Perdee.  The  bands  from  Lafayette  and  Johnson  coun- 
ties arrived  the  same  night.  Quantrill  assembled  the  captains 
when  they  had  all  arrived,  and  they  discussed  the  outlook  for  the 
contemplated  raid.  Nothing  was  found  to  prevent  its  continu- 
ance, and  it  was  decided  to  move  on  Lawrence. 

On  the  morning  of  the  19th  the  guerrillas  began  their  march. 
They  spread  extensive  wings  of  videttes  in  every  direction  and 
moved  slowly.  This  was  a  day  spent  in  feeling  their  way  among 
the  Federal  troops  in  the  country  through  which  they  were  pass- 
ing. The  videttes  reported  every  hour  —  some  of  them  more 
frequently.  The  march  was  in  the  direction  of  Lone  Jack,  and 
the  command  was  halted  at  the  farm  of  a  Mr.  Potter,  after  hav- 


Lexington,  Mo, 

First  Missouri  State  Militia  Cavalry  (six  companies),  Colonel  James 
McFerran. 

Osage  City,  Mo. 
Twenty-third  Missouri,  Company  D,  Captain  John  W.  Moore. 

Pleasant  Hill,  Mo. 

Fifth  Missouri  State  Militia  Cavalry  (one  company),  Captain  John 
Finger. 

Saint  Aubert's,  Mo. 
Twenty-third  Missouri,  Company  I,  Captain  Marion  Cave. 

Sedalia,  Mo. 

Lieutenant-Colonel  Alexanqder  M.  Woolfolk.  First  Missouri  State 
Militia  Cavalry  (four  companies),  Lieutenant-Colonel  Alexander  M.  Wool- 
folk.  Third  Indiana  Battery. 

Warrensburg,  Mo. 

Sixth  Missouri  State  Militia  Cavalry  (six  companies),  Colonel  Edwin 
C.  Catherwood. 

There  were  some  changes  in  these  garrisons  during  the  spring  and 
summer  of  1863,  but  in  the  main  they  remained  as  indicated  by  this 
assignment.  Colonel  C.  S.  Clark,  Ninth  Kansas,  commanded  the  small 
border  posts  south  of  Kansas  City  to  Trading  Post,  with  headquarters  at 
Coldwater  Grove,  Mo.,  but  he  was  a  poor  soldier  and  never  did  any  fighting 
he  could  possibly  avoid. 

Colonel  W.  C.  Eansom  was  brought  into  the  district  in  the  summer  with 
the  Sixth  Kansas  and  did  hard  work  and  much  fighting  of  guerrillas.  A 
part  of  his  regiment  was  at  Kansas  City.  There  were  a  few  Kansas  troops 
at  other  points.  But  the  Missourians  in  Western  Missouri  had  to  deal 
with  Missouri  troops  principally  in  the  spring  and  summer  of  1863. 

This  is  a  further  confirmation  of  what  was  stated  in  an  early  chapter 
of  this  work.  It  was  Missourian  against  Missourian,  largely,  during  the 
entire  war.  Lane  and  Jennison  were  in  Missouri  in  1861,  after  which 
there  were  very  few  Kansas  troops  in  Missouri. 


314          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

ing  spent  a  day  in  riding  ten  miles.  All  the  scouts  were  called 
in  and  their  reports  heard.  No  enemy  had  been  encountered  in 
any  direction.  Then  it  was  that  the  final  decision  to  go  on  to 
Lawrence  was  made.  The  men  were  assembled,  and  Quantrill 
addressed  them,  saying,  as  nearly  as  Captain  Gregg  can  recall: 

You,  one  and  all,  will  understand  that  the  undertaking  we 
are  about  to  commence  is  one  of  extreme  hazard.  It  might  be 
that  the  entire  command  will  be  overwhelmed,  the  ranks  deci- 
mated as  they  have  never  been  before.  Hence,  I  say  to  one  and 
all,  if  any  refuse  to  go  they  will  not  be  censured. 

Gregg  was  at  the  time  a  lieutenant  and  was  acting  as  adju- 
tant and  aid  to  Quantrill.  He  counted  the  men  and  reported  to 
Quantrill  that  there  were  two  hundred  and  ninety-four,  rank  and 
file,  who  responded  to  roll-call. 

The  preliminary  arrangements  and  movements  were  com- 
pleted at  the  Potter  farm.  When  all  was  done  and  every  man 
knew  where  he  was  going,  the  guerrillas  were  directed  to  feed 
their  horses  and  refresh  themselves  with  a  light  supper,  which 
they  did.  Then  rang  out  the  command  —  "Saddle  up." 

The  guerrillas  were  in  their  saddles  almost  instantly,  the 
column  was  formed  and  the  march  to  Lawrence  was  commenced 
in  earnest.  At  seven  o'clock  the  next  morning  they  were  on  the 
head  of  the  Middle  Fork  of  Grand  river,  in  Cass  county,  four 
miles  from  the  Kansas  line.  There  they  halted  and  remained 
until  three  o'clock  in  the  afternoon.  Then  the  guerrillas  "sad- 
dled up ' '  for  the  final  march  to  the  doomed  town.  South  of  the 
Blue  they  had  met  Colonel  John  D.  Holt  with  one  hundred  and 
four  men,  and  he  was  invited  to  take  his  men,  new  recruits,  prin- 
cipally, to  Lawrence  and  have  them  "christened."  To  this  Col- 
onel Holt  consented,  and  he  was  then  made  third  in  command. 
He  had  been  to  Northern  Missouri  and  was  on  his  way  out  of 
Missouri  with  men  he  had  recruited,  and  had  fallen  in  with 
Quantrill  by  accident. 

The  guerrilla  command  was  further  reinforced  while  on 
the  Middle  Fork  of  Grand  river  by  the  arrival  of  about  fifty  men 
from  other  parts  of  the  Grand  river  country  and  from  the 
Osage. 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  315 

The  total  force  of  Quantrill  was  made  up  as  follows : 

The  original  force,  as  reported  by  Gregg,     294 

Holt's  command,  104 

The  Grand  river  reinforcement,  50 

Total,  by  official  count,  448 

There  were  doubtless  other  accessions,  making  a  total  force 
of  guerrillas  of  not  less  than  four  hundred  and  fifty  men.a 

The  guerrillas  crossed  the  State-line  at  the  southeast  corner 
of  Johnson  county,  Kansas,  where  the  Fort  Scott  Military  Road 
leaves  Kansas  and  enters  Missouri,  and  crosses  one  of  the  head 
branches  of  Grand  river,  there  flowing  some  three  miles  east- 
ward and  out  of  Kansas.  At  this  point  a  road  then  branched 
off  and  led  west,  passing  one  and  one-half  miles  south  of  Aubry. 
At  Aubry,  Captain  J.  A.  Pike,  Company  K,  Ninth  Kansas  Vol- 
unteer Cavalry,  was  stationed  with  his  company  and  Company 
D,  Eleventh  Kansas  Volunteer  Cavalry.  Each  of  these  com- 
panies numbered  about  fifty  men.  Captain  Pike  formed  his  men 
in  line  of  battle  on  the  prairie  south  of  his  post  and  watched 
Quantrill  march  his  guerrillas  into  Kansas  only  one  and  a  half 
miles  from  his  line.  He  did  not  offer  to  attack.  He  did  nothing. 
His  actions  were  strange,  for  his  home  was  in  Lawrence.  He 
could  not  have  defeated  Quantrill,  for  he  was  outnumbered  four 
to  one.  But  he  knew  it  was  Quantrill,  and  he  could  have  hung 
upon  the  flanks  of  the  guerrilla  column ;  he  could  have  annoyed 
and  retarded  it.  He  could  have  delayed  it  a  few  hours,  and  that 
would  have  saved  Lawrence.  But  he  did  not  even  use  diligence 
in  notifying  the  Union  commanders  of  other  garrisons.  The  con- 
duct of  Captain  Pike  was  reprehensible  in  the  extreme.^ 

3  See  report  of  General  Thomas  Ewing,  Rebellion  Records,  Series  Ir 
Vol.  XXIII,  p.  580. 

4  The  conduct  of  Captain  Pike  was  severely  criticised  at  the  time  by 
General  Ewing  in  his  official  report   of  the  raid. 

Pike  tried  to  shield  himself  by  reporting  that  Quantrill  crossed  into 
Kansas  five  miles  south  of  Aubry.  He  realized  that  he  ought  to  have 
done  something  and  would  be  condemned  for  his  inactivity.  If  he  had 
reported  that  he  saw  Quantrill  in  Kansas,  marching  west  within  a  mile  and 
a  half  of  his  garrison,  and  that  he  did  nothing,  he  would  have  been  court- 
martialed,  as  he  should  have  been.  Perhaps  he  did  not  then  know  it  was 
Quantrill,  but  it  was  his  business  to  have  known.  Captain  Gregg's  account 
says  that  Quantrill  marched  west  only  half  a  mile  south  of  Aubry.  Aubry 


316          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

The  inefficiency,  stupidity,  diffidence,  we  will  not  say  cow- 
ardice, of  Captain  Pike  made  up  the  first  of  a  remarkably 
strange,  untoward,  and  lamentable  series  of  incidents  that  left 
Lawrence  without  any  notice  of  the  black  cloud  gathering  on  the 
border  to  overwhelm  her. 

Let  us  consider  this  column  of  guerrillas  strung  out  on 
the  virgin  prairies  of  Kansas,  crawling  toward  Lawrence  like  a 
monstrous  snake,  creeping  upon  its  prey.  There  were  more  than 
four  hundred  and  fifty  of  them,  as  can  be  made  out  from  the 
official  reports,  Gregg's  count  and  the  statement  of  Colonel  Holt 
to  Hon.  H.  S.  Clarke.5  Most  of  them  had  been  in  the  guerrilla 
warfare  of  the  border  two  years.  Some  of  them  had  been  in 
the  old  Kansas  wars.  These,  as  far  back  as  1855,  had  ravaged 
Kansas  settlements  by  the  light  of  burning 
homes.  Bill  Anderson  had  lived  on  the 
Old  Santa  F6  Trail  near  Council  Grove 
before  the  war  and  had  stolen  horses  and 
cattle  all  along  the  Neosho  Valley.  His 
father  met  a  violent  death  there  in  connec- 
tion with  a  horse-stealing  incident.  A 
year  before  this  raid  he  had  carried  the 
torch  along  the  old  trail  and  burned  men 
alive  in  their  homes.  He  was  more  savage 
than  a  mad  wolf,  and  his  men  panted  for 
blood.  "When  he  was  killed  he  had,  so  it 
em  Anderson  is  said,  the  scalps  of  two  women  on  the 

is  three  miles  west  of  the  State-line  and  two  miles  north  of   the  point 
where  Quantrill  entered  Kansas.     Gregg  is  in  error  as  to  the  distance. 

s  Edwards  says  Holt  was  with  Quantrill  at  the  inception  of  the  raid, 
but  this  is  not  probable.  He  had  been  to  Northern  Missouri  to  recruit 
men  for  the  Confederate  army  and  was  on  his  way  out  with  them,  and  was 
not  seeking  service  with  Quantrill  nor  in  Missouri.  He  fell  in  with  Quan- 
trill after  he  crossed  the  Blue,  probably  about  Chapel  Hill.  Colonel  Holt 
spent  most  of  his  time  while  at  Lawrence  at  the  front  gate  of  the  premises 
of  H.  S.  Clarke;  there  he  made  his  headquarters.  He  told  Mr.  Clarke  that 
he  had  fallen  in  with  Quantrill  by  accident  after  crossing  the  Blue  and 
that  Quantrill  had  invited  him  to  come  with  him  to  Lawrence  to  get  his 
men  christened.  He  saved  Mr.  Clarke's  life.  Mr.  Clarke  had  S.  W.  Brew- 
ster,  Esq.,  Chanute,  Kansas,  publish  an  account  of  his  experiences  on  the 
day  of  the  Massacre,  and  a  copy  of  the  pamphlet  is  in  the  Collection  of 
the  author. 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE 


317 


headstall  of  his  bridle/  Some  of  the  guerrillas  were 
not  lost  to  a  sense  of  justice,  but  being  in  the  warfare 
felt  that  they  could  not  afford  to  be  outdone  by  their  rabid 
comrades.  These  would  spare  a  life  if  they  could  do  so  with- 
out its  becoming  known  to  their  companions.  Many  had 
opposed  the  raid  and  saw  nothing  to  be  gained  by  it.  Colonel 
Holt's  men  had  seen  little  of  war,  and  most  of  them  had  com- 
mitted no  outrages  and  had  suffered  none.  The  venomous  blood- 
rioters  of  the  guerrilla  band  were  under  Bill  Anderson  and 
George  Todd;  these  panted  for  blood, 
blood,  blood.  They  lived  only  to  murder. 
Next  to  these  in  ferocity  stood  the  bands 
of  Younger  and  Jarrette.  Frank  James 
had  no  band  —  never  had  one  —  but  was 
with  Younger.  Jesse  James  had  not  yet 
joined  the  guerrillas  and  was  not  in  the 
raid. 

These  guerrillas  were  mounted  on 
the  best  horses  the  country  could  produce. 
It  is  not  probable  that  many  of  the  guer- 
rillas had  horses  that  they  had  come  by 
honestly.  They  were  the  best  horsemen 
in  America  at  that  time,  and  as  a  mount- 
ed military  organization  perhaps  the  world  has  not  surpassed 
that  band  of  horsemen  led  by  Quantrill  to  Lawrence. 

The  dress  of  the  guerrillas  was  peculiar  to  themselves.  It 
was  entirely  original.  It  was  in  a  sense  a  uniform.  Its  dis- 
tinguishing piece  was  an  over-shirt  —  called  the  guerrilla  shirt. 
This  was  the  garment  of  all  times,  purposes,  and  occasions. 
It  was  to  the  guerrilla  what  the  tartan  is  to  the  Highlander. 
It  was  cut  low  in  front,  the  slit  narrowing  to  a  point  above  the 
belt  and  ending  in  a  ruflflle-bunch  or  rosette.  This  slit  was  usu- 
ally bound  or  faced  with  some  fabric  of  light  weight  and  brilliant 
color,  as  were  the  pockets  and  sometimes  the  tail.  The  tails 
might  be  or  might  not  be  tucked  into  the  trousers.  Of  pockets 
there  were  usually  four  of  generous  capacity  —  one  on  each 
breast  and  one  on  each  side  below  like  those  in  a  coat,  but  there 

7  Border  Buffian  Troubles  in  Kansas,  by  Charles  E.  Green,  p.  52. 


John  Jarrette 


318          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 


Jeue  Jamet 


was  no  strict  rule  on  this  point,  the  mat- 
ter being  determined  by  the  whim  of  the 
owner  or  the  fancy  of  the  maker.  The 
shirt  was  made  from  any  cloth  of  suf- 
ficient weight  that  the  guerrilla  could  lay 
his  hands  upon.  Their  style  admitted 
some  variety  in  cut,  and  in  color  they 
ranged  from  the  brilliant  scarlet  of  red 
flannel  to  the  somber,  subdued,  and  dis- 
couraging hues  of  the  homespun  butter- 
nut. They  were  usually  made  for  the 
guerrillas  by  their  wives  or  sweethearts, 
and  some  of  them  were  elaborately  orna- 
mented with  fine  needlework  and  other- 
wise. 

At  the  Lawrence  Massacre,  Quantrill  wore  a  guerrilla  shirt 
made  of  brown  woolen  goods. 

The  arms  of  the  guerrillas  consisted  principally  of  Colt's 
navy  revolvers  of  forty-four  caliber.  Some  of  them  carried 
cavalry  carbines  which  they  had  captured,  a  few  had  Sharps 's 
rifles,  and  there  were  even  shot-guns  and  old  muskets  among 
them.  The  main  reliance  of  the  guerrilla,  however,  was  upon 
the  revolver.  And  the  guerrilla  was  usually  a  dead-shot  either 
afoot  or  on  horseback.  Quantrill  became  very  expert  with  the 
revolver.  There  has  been  much  said  about  his  teaching  his  men 
to  shoot  by  drilling  them  and  insisting  upon  compliance  with 
some  certain  formula  or  routine  of  action.  He  did  nothing  of 
the  kind.  He  urged  constant  practice  at  first,  but  each  man 
could  shoot  as  he  liked  if  he  shot  well.  Quantrill  required 
results  in  pistol-firing,  and  the  guerrilla  understood  this  art 
much  better  than  any  other  soldier.  The  powder-charge  of  the 
Union  soldier  was  made  up  for  him  and  these  charges  were  uni- 
form in  size.  The  guerrilla  made  up  his  own  charge.  He  was 
compelled  to  be  economical  of  his  ammunition.  He  discovered 
that  a  small  powder-charge  enabled  him  to  shoot  much  more 
accurately  than  he  could  shoot  with  a  heavy  charge.  His  pistol 
did  not  "bounce"  when  fired,  and  the  aim  was  not  spoiled. 
And  the  ball  ranged  as  far  and  penetrated  as  deeply  as  did  that 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  319 

fired  with  a  heavy  charge.  Every  guerrilla  carried  two  revolv- 
ers, most  of  them  carried  four,  and  many  carried  six,  some 
even  eight.  They  could  fire  from  a  revolver  in  each  hand  at 
the  same  time.  The  aim  was  never  by  sighting  along  the  pitsol- 
barrel,  but  by  intuition,  judgment.  The  pistol  was  brought 
to  the  mark  and  fired  instantly,  apparently  without  care,  at 
random.  But  the  ball  rarely  missed  the  mark  —  the  center. 
Many  a  guerrilla  could  hit  a  mark  to  both  the  right  and  the  left 
with  shots  fired  at  the  same  instant  from  each  hand. 

No  more  terrifying  object  ever  came  down  a  street  than  a 
mounted  guerrilla  wild  for  blood,  the  bridle-reins  between  his 
teeth  or  over  the  saddle-horn,  the  horse  running  recklessly,  the 
rider  yelling  like  a  Comanche,  his  long  unkempt  hair  flying 
wildly  beyond  the  brim  of  his  broad  hat,  and  firing  both  to  the 
right  and  left  with  deadly  accuracy.  When  a  town  was  filled 
with  such  men  bent  on  death,  terror  ensued,  reason  and  judg- 
ment fled,  and  hell  yawned.8 

8  Theodore  Bartles  was  an  early  settler  in  Wyandotte  county,  Kansas. 
His  father  settled  on  the  Leavenworth  road  in  that  county  and  established 
the  "Six  Mile  House,"  for  many  years  a  famous  hostelry.  In  the  Civil 
War  Theodore  Bartles  was  a  famous  Union  scout  and  a  Eed  Leg.  His 
brother,  Jacob  H.  Bartles,  was  in  the  Sixth  Kansas;  he  died  at  Dewey, 
Oklahoma,  which  town  he  founded.  Bartlesville  was  founded  by  him  and 
named  for  him. 

The  author  knew  Theodore  Bartles  many  years  —  until  his  death.  He 
was  a  famous  shot  with  a  revolver  —  had  defeated  Wild  Bill  (Hickock)  in 
many  a  contest  in  markmanship.  He  and  Wild  Bill  often  scouted  together. 

More  than  once  has  the  author  gone  to  the  woods  about  Old  Quindaro 
with  Bartles.  He  loved  to  shoot.  He  would  fire  two  revolvers  apparent- 
ly at  random  at  a  nickel  stuck  on  a  tree  distant  thirty  paces.  There 
would  be  but  one  report,  but  in  the  fragments  of  the  nickel  would  appear 
two  holes  made  as  though  the  balls  had  gone  through  it  side  by  side  and 
pressing  against  each  other.  The  mark  on  the  tree  where  the  balls  had 
entered  would  show  similar  impressions.  With  the  revolver  he  could  easily 
kill  small  song  birds  on  the  wing.  He  never  "took  aim,"  but  fired  in- 
stantly, seemingly  in  the  most  careless  and  indifferent  manner.  He  has 
often  related  to  the  author  an  incident  of  the  war.  He  was  riding  out 
the  Leavenworth  road  one  dark  rainy  night.  On  the  "big  fill"  he  was 
fired  on  by  persons  from  below  in  the  deep  gulch.  He  saw  the  flash  of 
the  gun  and  fired  several  times,  aiming  where  he  had  seen  it.  The  next 
morning  he  returned  there  and  found  pools  of  blood  all  about  and  the 
tracks  of  men  leading  to  the  Missouri  river  where  a  boat  had  been 


320          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 


moored.  It  seemed  that  he  had  killed  or  severely  wounded  one,  who  had 
been  carried  to  the  boat  by  the  others,  some  of  them  wounded. 

The  author  taught  a  term  of  school  at  the  village  of  Tiblow,  in 
Wyandotte  county,  in  the  winter  of  1881-82.  The  place  is  now  the  thriv- 
ing village  of  Bonner  Springs.  There  was  living  near  that  place  at  the 
time  an  old  Quantrill  guerrilla  under  an  assumed  name.  He  was  far  gone 
with  consumption  and  in  deep  poverty.  The  author  spent  some  nights 
"sitting  up"  with  him  when  he  was  bedfast  and  helpless.  He  often  told 
of  his  war  experiences  and  how  he  could  shoot.  Once  he  rallied  and  re- 
gained some  of  his  strength.  He  rode  his  old  white  horse  one  day  to  a 
point  where  a  telegraph  pole  stood  near  the  public  road.  Here  he  produced 
his  Colt's  navy  and  gave  the  author  an  exhibition  of  his  skill  as  a  marks- 
man. He  would,  on  his  old  horse,  charge  down  upon  the  telegraph  pole 
firing  rapidly  as  he  approached  it,  emptying  his  revolver.  The  balls  would 
all  be  placed  exactly  in  the  center  of  a  crack  running  down  the  pole  (made 
by  the  seasoning  of  the  pole)  at  an  equal  distance  apart.  The  diffi- 
culty of  this  feat  will  be  better  understood  by  remembering  that  these 
"seasoning"  cracks  follow  the  grain  of  the  wood  and  rarely  run  straight 
up  and  down  the  pole. 

He  could  hit  the  pole  about  three  shots  out  of  five  by  firing  over 
his  shoulder  as  his  horse  ran  away  from  it.  This  man  was  at  Lawrence. 
He  denied  that  he  did  any  killing  there,  and  only  admitted  that  he  was 
there  after  long  acquaintance  with  the  author  and  a  promise  never  to  re- 
veal his  identy.  For  strange  to  say,  he  was  an  "Eastern  man"  and  a 
pioneer  in  Kansas.  What  mysterious  things  may  happen  in  bloody  war! 

THE   REVOLVER 

So  general  was  the  use  of  the  revolver  during  the  Civil  War  that  a 
brief  sketch  of  its  origin  and  development  may  be  of  interest. 

Eevolvers   were   made    by   many   manufacturers,    and   various   styles 
were  furnished,  all,  however,  based  on  the  models  designed  and  patent- 
ed by  Colonel  Samuel  Colt,  the  inventor  of  the 
revolver  idea. 

Samuel  Colt  was  born  in  Hartford,  Conn., 
July  19,  1814;  died  in  1862.  His  father  was  a 
manufacturer,  being  largely  engaged  in  spinning 
and  weaving  silk.  The  son  worked  in  the  silk 
mills  under  the  good  old  New  England  rule  that 
a  boy  should  work  six  months  of  the  year  and 
go  to  school  the  other  six  months.  But  he  was 
enterprising  and  restless,  and  while  quite  young, 
ran  off  to  sea,  shipping  for  Calcutta  as  boy  be- 
fore the  mast  on  the  Carlo.  This  voyage  gave 
him  a  general  knowledge  of  the  world,  and  it 
was  while  handling  the  old  bell-mouthed,  brass- 
barreled,  clubby  firearms  carried  by  the 
ship  as  a  defense  against  pirates,  that  he  con- 


Colonel  Samuel  Colt, 
Inventor  of  the  Revolver 


THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE  321 

ceived  the  idea  of  the  revolving  cylinder  containing  chambers  to  be  dis- 
charged through  a  single  barrel.  He  whittled  out  a  rough  model,  which  he 
brought  home  with  him,  hoping  to  interest  his  father  in  the  manufacture  of 
the  weapon.  But  in  this  he  was  disappointed.  His  idea  was  regarded  with 
indifference  and  something  of  ridicule,  and  was  believed  to  be  wholly  im- 
practicable and  useless.  His  was  the  fate  of  all  inventors. 

But  Colt  had  the  persistency  of  true  genius.  He  was  confident  of 
ultimate  success.  In  the  years  1835  and  1836  he  secured  patents  covering 
his  invention,  and  in  the  latter  year  organized  the  "Patent  Arms  com- 
pany," which  established  a  factory  at  Paterson,  N.  J.  Having  adopted 
the  newly-discovered  percussion  cap  instead  of  the  old  flint-lock,  he  found 
it  hard  to  bring  his  weapon  into  public  favor.  The  criticisms  of  his  in- 
vention proved  beneficial,  however,  and  he  labored  diligently  to  overcome 
objections  and  perfect  his  models. 

Colt's  first  financial  success  was  in  the  Seminole  War.  He  took  a 
cargo  of  his  revolvers  to  Florida,  where  they  were  enthusiastically  re- 
ceived by  the  soldiers,  and  their  use  carried  dismay  to  the  Indian  bands. 
The  savages  could  not  understand  how  so  many  shots  were  fired  without 
reloading,  and  they  pronounced  the  revolver  "big  medicine." 

The  ending  of  the  war  with  the  Seminoles  destroyed  the  demand  for 
revolvers.  In  looking  about  for  a  market  it  occurred  to  Colt  that  Texas 
might  prove  a  good  field.  The  surplus  stock  was  sent  there  and  sold,  and 
the  patriot  army  put  them  to  such  good  use  that  to  this  day  the  Texan 
and  his  revolver  are  the  terror  of  the  Mexican.  The  independence  of 
Texas  was  due  in  some  considerable  degree  to  the  use  of  Colt's  revolver. 

On  May  16,  1843,  it  was  the  prin- 
cipal factor  in  winning  for  the 
Texans  a  naval  victory  over  the 
Mexican  fleet,  in  honor  of  which  a 
new  model  was  designed  by  Colonel 
Colt,  on  the  cylinder  of  which 

Colt'i  Navy  was  engraved  a  representation  of 

The  Deadly  Weapon  of  the  Border  the    naval    battle.     This    was    the 

origin  of  the  famous  "navy"  pistol,  perhaps  the  most  popular  and  widely- 
known  firearm  ever  made.  It  was  the  model  used  so  generally  by  the 
soldiers  on  both  sides  in  the  Civil  War.  In  the  warfare  of  the  border  it 
was  the  principal  weapon,  and  the  guerrillas  and  other  irregular  forces 
rarely  carried  any  other  arm.  Quantrill  and  his  men  never  used  anything 
but  the  Colt's  navy,  and  their  superior  marksmanship  came  from  the 
mastery  and  application  of  its  principles.  The  pride  to-day  of  the  sur- 
vivor of  the  Civil  War  is  the  Colt's  navy  revolver  carried  by  him  through 
that  period  of  strife.  The  weapons  were  so  honestly  made  that  almost 
every  one  to  be  found  is  in  good  condition  and  would  do  good  service 
after  nearly  fifty  years  of  almost  constant  use.  It  can  be  safely  said  that 
no  manufacturer  ever  turned  out  an  article  more  conscientiously  made 
21  » 


322          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS      . 

than  the  arm  made  by  Colonel  Colt,  a  quality  which  is  still  found  in  all 
the  products  of  the  institution  he  founded. 

Colonel  Colt  must  be  reckoned  one  of  the  great  American  inventors. 
The  influence  of  his  genius  is  felt  to-day.  The  lore  of  the  revolver  has  been 
the  principal  literature  of  the  frontier,  and  sustains  the  prediction  made 
by  Colonel  Colt  that  his  pistol  would  make  all  men  equal. 


CHAPTER  XXVI 

THE  LAWRENCE  MASSACRE 

IV 

CAPTAIN  PIKE  reported  that  Quantrill  crossed  the  State- 
line  into  Kansas  five  miles  south  of  Aubry.  The  point  is 
about  three  miles  east  and  two  miles  south,  following 
directly  east  and  south  courses.  The  original  surveys  of  the 
land  show  an  old  road  or  trail  leading  west  from  Missouri 
towards  that  royal  highway,  the  old  Santa  Fe  Trail.  Quantrill 
followed  this  old  trail,  then  in  constant  use,  to  a  point  about 
two  and  a  half  miles  south  of  Squiresville.  There  he  halted  and 
had  his  men  feed  their  horses.1  This  camp  must  have  been  made 
on  Section  18,  Township  15,  Range  24.  The  halt  was  made  to 
enable  the  guerrillas  to  capture  a  Colonel  Sims,  who  lived  in  that 
vicinity.  Sims  had  been  a  strong  Benton  Democrat  in  Missouri, 
and  he  was  on  the  death  list  carried  by  Quantrill.  His  absence 
from  home  saved  his  life,  though  the  squad  sent  to  murder  him 
compelled  Mrs.  Sims  to  cook  them  a  supper.  The  camp  was  just 
ten  miles,  by  the  trail,  from  the  point  where  the  guerrillas  had 
crossed  the  State-line. 

From  this  camp,  when  darkness  had  settled  over  the  rolling 
prairies,  Quantrill  turned  southwest  and,  in  about  two  miles, 
struck  Spring  Hill,  then  a  mere  village  on  the  trail.2  There  a 

1  The  Lawrence  Massacre,  by  Hovey  E.  Lowman,  p.  42.     This  agrees 
with  the   Gregg  Manuscript,  which  says:     "Dusk  coming  on,  we  halted, 
grazed  our  horses  for  half  an  hour,  when  we  resumed  our  march." 

2  Lowman,  in  his  The  Lawrence  Massacre  says  that  Quantrill  marched 
from  this  camp  in  a  northwesterly  direction  towards  Gardner.     This  is,  I 
think,   a  statement  made  without   adequate  information.     Gregg's  Manu- 
script says  that  the  guerrillas  passed  through  Spring  Hill,  and  Gregg  has 
often  told  the  author  that  they  went  through  Spring  Hill.     In  his  official 
report   General   Ewing   says   Captain   Coleman   struck   Quantrill 's   trail   at 
Spring  Hill. 


324          QUANTRILL  AND  THE  BORDER  WARS 

few  sold